The President, Class of ’96 of the Air Force Secondary School, Ikeja Old Students’ Association (AFSSOSA), Captain Soji Ajayi, has advised the federal government to increase funding to education so as to equip Nigerian students for future challenges and to enable them compete favourably with their counterparts around the world.
Speaking during the inauguration of a block of renovated canteen with new sets of chairs for students and teachers recently, Ajayi said improved funding is critical to quality education, quality manpower and infrastructure.
He argued that insufficient funding limits spending to few areas of educational needs, adding that the challenges of poor funding forces educators and school administrators to prioritise their needs, which leaves many other needs unattended to.
He said as part of the association’s reunion programme, the renovation of the 2007 ITF-funded structure was its first intervention that would be followed by many others, adding that the members’ mission to give back to their alma mater stemmed from their desire to see how they could contribute towards improving the current state of the school so that the students could get the quality education they got some 20 years ago.
Addressing the students, the president said, “this is my school and it remains my school. My formative years were in this school and I am very grateful for the quality of education I got here. It shaped me, moulded me and catapulted me to where I am today.”
While urging them to embrace hard work and make the best of their time and technology, Ajayi said good time management and good reading culture are some of the key elements that propel success.
“I encourage you today read your books very well and excel. Learn not only within the school but also outside the school. Explore other sources learning materials, such as the internet. There are many informative and educative materials out there in the internet. Some of the information available to you today were not available to us then. So, I will encourage you to spend more time in research beyond what you can get from your school.”
He announced that the group’s next intervention would be based on the school management’s prioritised area of need.
In her remarks, the Vice-President, Mrs. Omolara Shabi, who noted that education remains the best foundation upon which a successful life can built upon, advised the students to shun frivolity and commit quality time to their studies. “This is jet age, you need to be prepare to face it. So read wide, do not limit yourself. Read books about successful people, watch documentaries and less entertainment.”
The climax of the reunion programme was a novelty football match between the set’s male and women football team, which ended in favour of the women with two goals to nothing, followed by a dinner party.