Lagos Debunks Social Media Report on Admission of Underage Pupils

The Lagos State Ministry of Education has debunked a social media report alleging that a decision has purportedly been reached regarding the admission of under-aged pupils into Junior Secondary Schools in Lagos State.

A statement issued on Tuesday by the Office of the Honourable Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Folasade Adefisayo refuted the claim, noting that no decision has been made and that the issue, which is still under review in the Ministry of Education, has been a matter of great concern to the present administration.

In her words, “This is to affirm that the Ministry of Education has indeed received concerns from various stakeholders regarding this subject. As a consequence, meetings were held with various stakeholders with correspondence and minutes exchanged”.

Adefisayo disclosed further that subsequent meetings were also scheduled with various categories of stakeholders such as Executives of Private Schools Associations and Parent Bodies, Office of Education Quality Assurance, State Universal Basic Education Board, Lagos State Examination Board, All Nigeria Conference of Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCOPPS) and Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), among others.

Noting that the meetings had to be postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Commissioner averred that the State Government will involve all stakeholders in the rigorous process of implementing the National Policy on Education in the State.

“The Public is hereby assured that as soon as normalcy returns, these meetings will be held, and details of the State’s final position on the matter will be made available to all stakeholders, both digitally and in hard copy through the State media platforms”, she stated.

Adefisayo, however, pointed out that education is not only cognitive and that other aspects must also be given due attention and consideration in order to produce youths who will be able to function effectively in the 21st Century.

“Furthermore, the expected years of schooling at each level of education is entrenched in the National Policy on Education. The adverse effects of non-completion of the Primary School Curriculum and being rushed into Junior Secondary School before physical, mental, emotional and social maturity of children is well-researched and documented”, she stated.

The Commissioner also stressed the importance of not putting the cart before the horse, saying “As mentioned, we have outlined concerns on this matter and all issues raised will be discussed and due process will be followed before implementation.