Fidelis David in Akure
The Old Students Association of Owo High School, Ondo, has expressed displeasure over the poor enrollment of students into public secondary schools across Nigeria. This is just as the old students, as part of efforts to contribute their quota towards achieving improved teaching and learning experiences, inaugurated projects worth N100 million to mark the 60th anniversary of the school.
The National President of the association, Dr. Foluso Falaye, who disclosed these during the diamond jubilee celebration, said he was not impressed with the enrollment, saying that there was no reason for the number of pupils in any public school to be dwindling while that of private schools are on the increase.
Specifically, he advocated the return of schools to the missionaries for efficient management while the government oversees them to ensure affordability.
“Public school system has become overwhelming for government and if you see what is going on now, government is trying to re-strategies by giving back some of those schools to their missionary owners. I think that’s a step in the right direction,” said Falaye. “So, both the old students and other stakeholders should assist the government in taking over these schools and ensure proper policies that will improve the quality of education in those schools”.
The projects executed by the old students included N2.5 million support for ICT training of teachers and students; construction of JSS3 block, donation of 30 fans, rehabilitation and renovation of SS3 block, renovation of Biology and Physics Laboratories, borehole, principal office and admin block, and construction of volleyball and badminton courts, among others.
According to Falaye, the school, founded 60 years ago, has attracted tremendous infrastructural projects through the alumni association and old students.
“This year’s celebration is a unique milestone as it marks the 60th year that the school began in a modest cocoa store with 24 students – 19 males and five females. It is heart-warming that some of the pioneer students are with us here today,” stated Falaye. “As you would agree with me, Owo High School has indeed come of age having moved to its permanent site and now having close to 2,000 in student population.”
He saluted the founder’s vision, the late Pa Michael Adekunle Ajasin.
However, Falaye noted that the “school has no fence and with the security challenges in our country today, those children without security are unacceptable and we will look at it.”
He added, “The school has no enough teachers and all these, we are putting into consideration and we are working with the government to address these issues.”
The Global Anniversary Committee Chairman, Mr Amakaye Ojomo, represented by Mrs Temilola Ojo, the Diamond Jubilee, said the school was wearing a new look.
“In the past few months, the alumni have put in buildings and structures of over N100 million. The alumni would like to express our profound gratitude to Akeredolu, our beloved governor of Ondo state, and the Commissioner for Infrastructure, Lands and Housing, Raimi Aminu, for the construction and tarring of the roads in the school. We will be commissioning all the projects on the 11th of November.”