with 5 Comments

Children in the UK finish secondary at 16/17. Children in the US and Canada finish secondary school at 17/18… a few of them 19.

The British children would still go ahead and graduate by 21/22. The Americans and Canadians will still go ahead and graduate at 22/23/24. Or a few years more for courses of more than 5 years.

In Nigeria, skipping classes is now the order of the day. Every parent claims their children are the genius and smartest and too intelligent to do all classes.

For the life of me; I don’t understand what a child who is less than 16 is doing in a University or any tertiary institution for that matter. Where the hell are you rushing these children to?

And no! Those who skip classes are most often NOT among the most intelligent. In my primary school, I can remember that the best five students in our class did NOT skip any class. I know the top students in my primary school and we know that most of us did all our classes. Most of my primary school classmates who skipped classes were the class average students. So, stop deluding yourself that skipping a class is a sign of intelligence…. NOT in Nigeria.

In primary school, I found some of my subjects boring because I thought I was far ahead. My parents were primary and post primary education specialists/professionals. My father was also a professional in child developmental psychology and education guidance and counseling. When it comes to planning children’s education and career, my parents were the professionals you could consult.
They told me that I was not going to skip any class. As a child, I was angry at my parents for not letting me skip classes, but now I understand and I’m grateful for their decision.

Some of those AVERAGE students who skipped those classes are on my Facebook list and they haven’t achieved anything more than I have. I am more intellectually and emotionally grounded than most of them. They rushed, I caught up and overtook most of them. Career-wise, I’m ahead of most of them. So, what exactly was the aim of the rush?

A system of education is there for a reason. In planning a system of education, a lot of factors are put into consideration.
The Nigerian system is originally designed for a child to graduate secondary school at 17/18. That’s NOT too late. It means that such a child would graduate from a four year university program at 21/22; which is still perfectly ok.

Yes, I know there can be strike. But do you really think it’s wise to rush your children just to make up for the possible strike? How about letting them go through the normal route? How about letting them develop emotionally?

In most developed countries, only the very few children who have demonstrated very high intelligence get to have their education fast-tracked. And this decision is not necessarily made by the parents. A person who specializes in child development and education must have assessed the child to be of extraordinary intelligence, plus the child must have the emotional capacity to handle academics far ahead of his age.

In the real sense, only less than 0.5% of the world’s population have such high intelligence or “near-genius” IQ level. But in Nigeria, once a child scores above 90% in maths and says one intelligent thing, the child is automatically assumed a genius too intelligent to go through the designed line of education. They start “jumping” classes. Some of them jump and break their legs in the process. 😑

None of my children will go into University before the age of 16. If you like be a genius. My children will be allowed to be children. If they get into University at 16 and graduate at 20, that’s still very much early enough. We are not in a hurry to overtake the planet.

My 11 year old child will NOT be cracking Quantum Physics and Navier Stokes Equation while her mates are still watching cartoons. You can only be a child once… adulthood is a long stressful journey. My children will have their childhoods before they start cracking their brains with adulting.

In my early 20s, I was in Engineering school cracking Navier Stokes Equation and a bit of Quantum Physics, and that thing gave me headache, sleepless nights and almost HBP. I won’t put my 11 year old through that just because he or she happens to be of high IQ.

Every Nigerian parent claims their children is too intelligent to do all classes. So, tell me, with all these “class jumping geniuses” we’ve got, what have they invented over the years?

No one told you this. I know this might hurt but someone has got to say it anyway…:
Most of those your children who you think are too intelligent to do all classes are just intelligent enough to be at the top 25% of the class. Not too intelligent to have their education fast-tracked and normal childhood development disrupted.


Dideolu Adekogbe

Bring Back Primary Six Movement