Education is the best legacy parents can give their children and the primary legacy a nation can offer her citizens. While the latter remains a daunting task for the Nigerian government as it continued to prioritize fuel subsidy payment over its education sector, making the former work would require extra efforts on the part of the parents.
For instance, the Federal Government of Nigeria spent a total of N648 billion to subsidize fuel in 2018, this amount is over four times more than the combined fund devoted to building new public schools, health facilities and equipping new science laboratories, according to data collated by Bloomberg.
For this reason, it is oftentimes not a piece of cake for some families to know what to do with regards to their children’s education, and when they know, doing it rightly becomes a concern in the face of the worrisome revelations on the quality of education in Nigeria, particularly in the nation’s public secondary schools.
More so, with growing trends on information and communication technology, learning differences among children, and acquiring 21st-century skills, today’s education is apparently no longer about enrolling at a local public school and hoping to graduate some years after but excelling in external examinations.
These ills in Nigerian public secondary schools and the craving for quality education have spurred interests in privately-owned secondary schools in the country.
To this effect, we compiled a list of top Nigerian states, where students in private school recorded the best performance in the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE), administered by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC), across the country. This could serve as a guide for discerning parents who are concerned about the potential output of investment on their children’s education.
In the last three years (2016 to 2018), Ogun, Lagos, Nassarawa and Rivers continued to feature among top 10 states across the federation with the highest proportion of private secondary school students having five credits and above including English Language and Mathematics, the basic requirement for admission into tertiary institution.
The percentage of students in private schools in Ogun state who had five credits and above including English Language and Mathematics in 2016 was 48.4 percent, the highest in the country. This was trailed by Lagos with a record of 44.3 percent and Rivers with 43.6 percent, according to recent data obtained from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
Although Ogun state retained its leading position in 2017, it underperformed its 2016’s record as only four out of every ten students who enrolled for WAEC in private schools within the state had five credits and above including English language and Mathematics. Kano followed closely with 33.8 percent, while Abia was the third in the ranking with 32 percent.
Ogun state lost its position last year after more than half (52.59 percent) of students who sat for WAEC in Kano state’s private schools excelled, making it the best state where private school students have the highest tendency to succeed in WAEC. Abia and Lagos states followed closely as the second and third positions, Ogun stood as the fourth, while Nassarawa had the fifth-largest proportion.
Findings by BusinessDay revealed that the average cost of private secondary school education in Kano state is N50,000 per term. However, the fee is slightly higher in states such as Abia, Ogun, and Nassarawa where it costs about N50,000 to N150,000 on the average to fund a child’s education per term in a private college.
For Lagos state, the fees vary depending on the location, and the quality of services rendered. An average private secondary school situated on Lagos mainland charges between N150,000 to N300,000 per term as tuition fee, while the fee ranges from N300,000 to N500,000 for schools located on Lagos Island with almost similar facilities and standard of education.
Private schools running both Nigeran and foreign (British) curriculum on Lagos Island charge between N500,000 and over N1 million per term on the average.
A breakdown of the ranking comprising top 10 Nigerian states from 2016 to 2018 is contained in the embedded table for better understanding.