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Despite spending over N30 billion in post primary education in Taraba State, most public secondary schools within Jalingo the state capital lacks chairs, laboratories and computers, Taraba Truth and Facts gathered.

 

Prominent among the many dilapidated schools in Jalingo are  Salihu Dogo Secondary School, Jauro Isa Secondary School Mayo Dassa, Model Secondary School, Jauro Gbadi Secondary School, Government Day Secondary School Nukkai, Government Day Secondary School Mile Six among others,

 

These schools when visited by our undercover reporter lacks basic learning furniture like chairs and table as many students sit on bare floor and stones  to receive lessons.  

Most of the schools also lack basic laboratory and computers facilities to teach the students, a protesting SS2 student of Salihu Dogo Secondary School in a viral video claimed to have never seen a laboratory before despite offering Biology, Chemistry and Physics,  

In Jauro Isa Primary School Mayo Dassa, pupils were seen seated on dusty floors while waiting for teachers in  the school's dilapidating buildings.

 

"This school needs a complete revamp as everything is just wrong from the structure, to the teachers down to the students. Few teachers were seen hanging around the school premises. From the time I went and left, I only saw one teacher teaching in the entire school and at 11:30am some teachers were seen already leaving the school before the 12noon official closing hours." Our reporter who visited the school said.

 

 

 

 Students in some of the secondary schools told Taraba Truth and Facts that despite  paying  their fees promptly, the school has failed to provide chair and tables and were only taught theory about computers.

 

"The state of government owned schools in Taraba State is an eyesore as class structures and school environments look more like a cattle rearing field than a human learning environment, its more disgraceful that schools which are few metres away from Government House are dilapidated and lack basic things like chair and tables, you can imagine how schools in the interior parts of the state would look like," a concerned parent Mr Britus Jakanda told this newspaper in Jalingo.

 

 In a viral video on social media of students of Salihu Dogo  secondary school  protesting lack of chairs accused the School management of not using their school fees to provide them with chairs.

 

Narrating to our reporter how the incident started, an SS1 student of the school (identity withheld) said, some students were ask to leave the school because they didn't pay their school fees.

"But the students said they were not going anywhere because the previous school fees they have been paying and being promised of chairs have not been fulfilled, so until they see chairs, they won't pay their school fees.

"The students had seek an audience with the School Principal to express their grievance but the Principal refused to address them rather she sent her vice principal who was able to calm the situation.

 

The student said, "that was how the students started protesting, they closed the school's main gate and headed to the principal's office. This situation went on for more than two hours before police were invited to dispense the students. 

 

"It took the intervention of some of the staff of the school before the principal was able to sneak out and run away".

 

When asked if the students have been addressed by the principal after the said outburst, at the time of filling in this report, the students said no one has spoken to them nor addressed anything concerning the scenario and the school is not making any effort to improve their condition.

Another student said the protest started after the School announced commencement of the midterm Continuous Assessment CA Test.

 

"the students refused that they can't write the CA tests 'standing',  the students in most cases take notes and lessons while standing due to unavailability of desk and chairs despite continuous assurance from the school management that chairs would be provided after payments of school fees in the past."

 

 

 Other students told Taraba Truth and Facts that the situation in the school gets so bad whenever it rains  that most  of the students won't show up at school because automatically the classroom floor goes wet due to lack of windows and they won't be able to sit on the bare floor.

 

 A top official of the school blamed the lack of chairs in the School on hoodlums who looted the chairs during Covid-19 closure of schools.

 

"The school had enough chairs in the classes before now, but the classes have repeatedly been visited by hoodlums who stole the chairs particularly during the Covid-19 break, we returned and discovered that all our chairs have been looted and the school is yet to recover from this. 

Public secondary students in Jalingo who spoke to Taraba Truth and Fact newspaper lamented that there are barely exposed to practical of what they are being taught in core science subjects.

 

The official said "until the doors  are fixed in the classrooms, we won't be able to keep chairs there anymore but for the meantime we've begged the students to be patient as measures are being put on ground to avail chair and desks for them".

Mr Jakanda lamented that most of the public secondary schools in Taraba State lacks basic modern items  and students still learn in unconducive  environments.

 

"The decry in Taraba State public secondary schools calls for urgent government attention, as at today the state cannot boast of  classrooms with chairs, nor a working computer lab in any of its school in the state, the schools are in shambles and government keeps budgeting billions for them."

 A SS 1 student of Government Day Secondary School Nukkai said students are not taught computer practical in his school."  Am in SS 1 and have never used a computer before in my school, my  parents are just planning to enrol me in a computer school but in my school our computers are locked up and we are not given access to it."

A guardian, Mamman Zainab said students in the state are finding it difficult to pass JAMB's Computer Based Exams  because of their lack of exposure to computers.

"Our students don't know how to operate computers and this is affecting them during JAMB exams because its Computer based and they were exposed to it, most schools that teach these students computer practical, imagine an SS2 student who cannot operate a computer how do you expect such student to pass JAMB, the problem facing our public schools in Taraba State is much and government must brace up to tackle it not making propaganda with it, because its affect our future leaders."  

 

Budget documents sighted by  Taraba Truth and Facts shows that  the Taraba state government under the leadership of Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku  has spent over  N 30billiion on secondary schools in the state for the last 7years.

Between 2017 and 2021, the Taraba State government approved over  N5 billion to be spent on the state's basic education, and N23 billion on education. The state budget breakdown shows that in 2019, education got N8, 355,032,016.80 approval, while 2020 it got N9, 190,535,218.48 estimate and 2021 N10, 109,588,740.33.

During a presentation of  the 2022 budget breakdown,  Commissioner for Budget and Planning Mr Solomon Elisha,  said Taraba government has allocated over N6 billion for post primary schools management education in the state in the 2022 budget to boost the quality of education in the state.


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