National President, National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools, NAPPS, Chief Yomi Otubela has appealed to the Federal Government, State Governments, and stakeholders to invest heavily in the education and safety of the children for a better future.
He also urged school owners, educators, or administrators, to take absolute responsibility to achieve not only sound education but safety and well-being for the children put in their care. “In other words, learners should feel safe to actively face their studies without fear or distractions.’
This was contained in his message in celebration of 2023 Children Day.
According to him, fhe theme for this year’s Children’s Day celebration “Investing In our Future is Investing In our
Children” is a reminder of the need for governments and education stakeholders to set a comprehensive agenda that caters to the education, health, safety, and well-being of the children.
“Investing in children implies that we are investing in our future as a nation. The nation and the world at large cannot prosper if children of today are not healthy, educated, protected and properly nurtured to face the future.”
He continued: “Moreover, investing in the education and well-being of children is important not just to a family, but to the society as a whole. These children are the leaders of tomorrow, and the outcome of our society depends on what we make out of our children today.
“We must note that just as the rights of citizens are enshrined in the constitution, so are the rights of children to good health, education, shelter, security, rights to basic things of life, and many more.
“As the vulnerable ones in society, children need to be protected and provided for by the laws of our country.”
He added that the Child’s Rights Act should be reviewed to accommodate other emerging issues relating to the protection of our children while urging states in Nigeria that are yet to adopt the Child’s Rights Act in their laws to do so in the interest of the children.
“Parents are strongly encouraged to constantly pay special attention to the emotional needs of their children. Lack of affection and neglect may have devastating consequences on children, including developmental delay, failure to thrive, hyperactivity, aggression, depression, low self-esteem, substance abuse, running away from home and a host of other emotional disorders. The results will often lead to a decline in academic performance.
“In all, we urge parents to help the school management to ensure that their children adhere strictly to the policy of the school management just as they are also encouraged to adopt “positive digital parenting” aimed to provide children with adequate resources to engage in the digital space safely and responsibly.
“I must admit that in the last few years, Nigerian children have had a fair share of the insecurity challenges that have continued to ravage the country. This has manifested in the form of kidnappings, killings, rape and other vices in schools.
“Therefore, as the nation looks forward to a new administration in a couple of days, we urge the incoming Government at all levels to ensure that our children are properly protected in our various schools to go about their academics safely. This calls for government security operatives to collaborate with the internal security arrangements in schools for effective monitoring within and around the schools.
Otubela also want Governments at various levels to take it further by creating an environment where children will not only feel safe and happy to learn but also provide a safe and an enabling environment to support their mental well-being.
Wishing the children all over the states of the federation a memorable Children’s Day celebration, NAPPS President said As Nigeria join the rest of the world to celebrate 2023 Children’s Day, all stakeholders in the education sector should work together towards making an environment safe, where children will live, learn and achieve their potential.