By Abdallah el-Kurebe
The Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) has said that 84.6 percent of students in Kano do not know how to use the Internet.
This is contained in a communiqué issued at the end of a two-day Stakeholders Meeting on Promoting Greater Access to Internet in Public Girls Secondary Schools in Kano State held in the state capital.
The meeting, attended by over 50 people representing education authorities, parents, teachers, students, civil society organizations and journalists, was part of a larger engagement supported by the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) and meant to deliberate on the findings of the Survey on Access to Internet in Public Girls Secondary in Kano State conducted by CITAD.
According to the survey findings, “84.6% of the students do not know how to use internet; 10.8% of the students said they learnt to use the internet from their homes, and do not have access to internet in their schools; only 24.9% respondents said they have computer laboratory in their schools.
“Only 4.7% respondents said they have internet in their schools; only 50 out of a total 204 schools have computer laboratory; only about 9% said are allowed by their parents to use the internet while the rest discouraged from using the internet for various reasons (23.3%, Moral concerns 26.0%, Exposure to boys and men 11.1% and Waste of time 8.5%); only 3.35 said they had received advice from colleagues against using the internet show that peer influence is low; only one of 0.12% of the respondents said they could afford to subscribe internet access and a computer,” the survey reported.
According to CITAD, the survey was motivated by the massive failure of students, especially females in the 2017 computer-based Unified Matriculation Examination (UME) of Joint Matriculation Examinations Board (JAMB) in the state.
Many students, it further reported, were using the computer for the first time in the life during the examination and consequently did not know how to interact with the systems to write the examination. “The objective of the survey was to assess the actual state of things in public secondary schools and develop an appropriate advocacy plan to support the campaign for the promotion of greater access to internet for female students of secondary schools in the state.”
The stakeholders meeting recommended among other things that, “Governments at all levels should as a matter of urgency equip female schools with ICT facilities and internet access as well as recruit sufficient number of qualified ICT teachers; schools should be supported by their proprietors and other stakeholders to have resources to repair, maintain and upgrade their systems as well as pay for internet connectivity; principals and other school administrators should be creative in the efficient and effective use of the available ICT facilities in their schools to ensure that all students have access to and use these facilities.
“Proprietors of schools must meet their obligation of providing adequate ICT facilities given that computer studies is now compulsory and the fact that the Universal Matriculation Examination is computer-based; stakeholders should sustained high level of advocacy to government, philanthropists, donor agencies and other stakeholders to support the provision of ICTs facilities to girl’s secondary schools; there should be massive sensitization to parents, traditional and religious leaders and CBOs etc, to encourage positive use of Internet among female students,” the meeting recommended.
Malama Sanah Mu’az of the Faculty of Computer Science, Bayero University Kano (BUK) delivered the keynote address on ICT, Girls and Education” while Isyaku Garba made a presentation on “Sources of Support for Schools.”