By Babatunde Ogunrinde
Lagos – Some stakeholders in the education sector on Friday called on government to take guidance and counselling of students more seriously particularly at the formative stage.
The stakeholders, in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), said that issue of immorality in the society would be brought to the barest if counsellors were to guide students in secondary schools.
Adeolu Ogunbanjo, the National Deputy President, National Association of Parents Teachers Association of Nigeria (NAPTAN), said that the presence of guidance and counsellors in schools should be made compulsory.
Ogunbanjo said that the state government should embark on massive employment of guidance and counsellors to help check the falling moral values in the society.
He said this step would also go a long way in helping the youths to quickly identify with what they planned to become in life and make the right career choices.
Ogunbanjo said that there was the need to employ well trained professionals to handle the youths, especially when parents’ efforts had failed.
“The councilors will have enough time for the youths; they will do well to impact into them the right values and the character of doing things.
“This should be a nationwide exercise as the youths cannot be allowed to rot away due to lack of proper attention and guidance,“ Ogunbanjo said.
Mr Adedoyin Adesina, the Chairman, National Union of Teachers, Lagos Chapter, urged the state government to recruit more guidance and counsellors in secondary schools.
“The social ills of the society are just getting too much and the youths are falling prey to activities that can deter their future if not properly checked.
“Until the guidance and counsellors are allowed to perform their professional work which they learnt, we may have more problems from wrong career choices.
“Counsellors are needed for career progression, they would work in a relaxed manner and basically have time to listen to the youths and solve their problems,“ Adesina said.
Mr Morakinyo Abiola, a member, National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools, (NAPPS), said that the quality of education had dropped drastically and government was not doing enough to change the situation.
He said that government should focus on providing the necessary structures in schools to help safeguard the future of our youths.
“Counsellors would go a long way to make a difference in classrooms and the productivity of the youths, but most importantly, the quality of education has to improve.
“For instance, the tax levied on private practitioners is just too much and it does not help to project education the way we should.
“Counsellors have lots of role to play in shaping the lives of students in their moral behaviours and their future when they are out of schools, so, we need professionals that can guide them well,” Abiola said.