Tuesday, 19 August 2014


Students Population hits 443 and Still Growing
Appeal for Support to Cope with Growing Numbers

Moshood Oshunfurewa

The free holiday coaching of Education Rights Campaign (ERC) entered its second week last week. There is four more weeks to go and already, the number of participants has swelled to 443 (four hundred and forty three)! There are now 153 in SS1, 164 in SS2 and 126 in SS3.

The program is taking place at the Anglican Primary School, 1 Ezie Lane off boundary road Ajegunle, Apapa, Lagos.

Last week we reported 79 students and 17 volunteer teachers in the first two days of the coaching. The exponential growth we are witnessing is another testament to the hunger for education among young people, and goes to confirm that it is government neglect and abandon that is cutting short the dream of the youths.

A class in progress
In the working class community of Ajegunle, many of these young students would be busy roaming about the neighborhood and streets if the opportunity of attending a free coaching was not on offer. This is because so deep is poverty in Ajegunle that the amount charged by private and public coaching organizers is often beyond the means of many parents. For most poor parents, the priority would be to save for the expenses that would crop up after the school holiday ends than spend the little they have on coaching classes. 

If public education were quality and of high standard, there may be no need to attend extra classes outside of the normal school classes. Unfortunately due to the complete collapse of public education, secondary school students needs extra coaching during the holidays to prepare for the new term and also for external examinations like WAEC, NECO and UTME. The ERC free holiday coaching is like a welcome relief to many working class parents and students in Ajegunle. We are glad to have been able to keep on providing this service since 2005.

However, more support (both financial and otherwise) would be helpful in ensuring that we are able to cope with the incredible turnout which actually is still growing. As the news of the exercise spreads, more and more students turn up eager to benefit. At this stage, more donations will help in ensuring that we are able to accommodate each and every one of the new students turning up every day.

Volunteer Teachers
Apart from financial support, more volunteer teachers are needed. Presently, the number of Volunteer teachers has increased to 23 but more are needed. Please contact us through (07033697259 and edurightsforall@yahoo.co.uk) if you have any support you would like to give.

Every Friday, a career and counseling session is held. Last week, the coaching played host to Dr. Kuti Ezebiro, an architect, writer and poet and Dr. Sanni, a medical doctor in the community.

Dr. Ezebiro stressed the need for the students to prepare diligently for success, which can only be achieved through constant learning and searching for knowledge. 

Dr. Kuti Ezebiro counseling the students
Dr Sanni, a medical doctor of City of Hope hospital was happy as he could not believe his eyes when he saw the number of students present. He enjoined all the students to take the advantage of the free coaching to learn and study. He also told them about the values of hard work.

He educated the students on the Ebola virus, stressing the need for proper hygiene to prevent infection.

Students are hopeful to receive more wonderful visitors this Friday during the week’s career and counseling talk. They are also happy for the fact the coaching gave them opportunities to meet with students from other schools and to cross fertilize ideas and to meet professionals that inspire them.

The ERC was formed by the Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM) since 2004 to fight for better funding of education. The ERC campaigns for the provision of free, functional and democratically-managed public education at all levels. We support all struggles of students and education workers for improvement in working conditions, better pay, against fee hike and commercialization and for an end to infringement on democratic rights on campuses.

In communities such as Ajegunle, we work actively among school students and teachers to campaign for the renovation of school buildings, stoppage of illegal charges and improvement in the teaching and learning facilities. The free holiday coaching while it provides opportunity for indigent students to attend coaching classes during the long-term holiday also helps to highlight the abandon and neglect of public education especially in poor communities like Ajegunle and helps to point search light at the activities of the authorities in charge of the schools.

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