Importance of girl-child education

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A significant function of the education of the girl-child in Nigeria is that it offers her the opportunity to chart her destiny with the skills and information she acquired from basic education up to tertiary education. The girl-child is provided with diverse basic knowledge, skills, and training which contribute to national development.

An educated girl child can only grow through a literate woman who has a greater chance of breaking the cycle of social vices by passing good knowledge to her daughter. No society can develop without the help of the girl-child so do we deny girls a right to education? Thus giving a girl child education can help to reduce the menace bedevilling this great country because they can adequately instilling good knowledge in their children if they get married.

Education offers girls the necessary skills and information needed to excel in a chosen career in future Hence, a girl who is educated can grow to become a teacher, architect, doctor, computer scientist, lawyer and pharmacist, among other lucrative and noble professions. And by giving girls a right to education we can be able to right the wrongs in our society.

Education is not just limited to a western or religious education but a life orientation. This is a fact and we have to consider it considerably. I am confident that if we want our future to be full of joy, it is vital for us to educate every girl in our society. I have known for a long time that girls’ education is a way to nation building. Perhaps, this is a time to give our girls a chance to explore their potential through quality education.

An Indian poet and author, Neelam Saxena Chandra, considers this issue holistically and reaches a conclusion which is worth reflecting on.

Chandra stated, “If you think that educating your girl is enough for her to tackle the boundaries of tradition, then you are wrong. You have to ensure that not only you empower her with education, but also make her strong enough to resist the evils of societal pressure under which she often buckles. Her life and honour are far more important than “what will people say’’? A little emotional support from the parents can make the life of a daughter abused by her in-laws beautiful.”

Yes, it is undoubtedly true that those who educate women do so because they are smart. They educate women because doing so changes the world.

It is my belief that every parent should do more to make the future of their female children worthwhile.  They have to go the extra length to ensure that they do everything possible to empower girls with outstanding education. Gone are the days when girls were subjected to all forms of domestic chores and denied opportunities of education. A society that disdains education of the girl-child has cogently traded its future.

However, this is a call to government at every level to create strategies in preventing diverse women-related problems such as sexual harassment, gender inequality among others. Ministries responsible for women affairs should meaningfully perform their duties by creating an enabling environment for girls education to achieve the Nigeria of our dreams.

Anti-apartheid icon, Archbishop,  Desmond Tutu, once said that, “If we are going to see real development in the world then our best investment is women.’’ I concur with this fantastic position because when women are educated, Nigeria will certainly become stronger, greater and more prosperous. Girls education is essential and a must in our country since ignorance is the worst enemy.

Religious leaders especially in areas where the education of girls is not seen as a priority should endeavour to remove barriers to education of the girl-child. It is vital for them to focus wholly on creating an atmosphere where the importance of girl education will be given adequate attention. They have to also consider the importance of girl-child education by creating awareness on the imperative of such a move.

There is an adage that, “though the clay had been moulded into a pot, it has yet to pass through the fire.’’ This is a food for thought.

Lastly, I call on parents to try their utmost best to ensure good education for the girls in order to have a morally sound society.

  • Raheenatu Ibrahim sent this piece from the Department of Mass Communication, Abubakar Tatari Ali Polytechnic Bauchi, Bauchi State

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