On the girl-child education

The government at all levels need to accord education of the girl child more priority. It is imperative to increase the number of special science schools equipped with facilities for learning and teaching. Excelling female students in sciences should be encouraged with prizes and scholarships. The government should also be involving female scientists in development and implementation of STEM-policies.

Groups, associations and other stakeholders in science education and practices should facilitate more engagement in national and international collaborative scientific research for women in STEM.

In the same vein, NGOs and interested social-bodies must deepen efforts in encouraging young girls to develop interest in science-based courses. This can be done with awareness campaigns and advocacy on gender equality. The world needs to conquer the problematic issues of stereotypes. We can no longer shy away from the myth that STEM- endeavors are considered exclusive rights of men in large parts of Nigeria and Africa.

As Africa and the rest of the world work to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals in 2030, we must come around to the understanding that improved participation of women and girls in science, technology, engineering and mathematics may determine the success (SDGs 4 and 5) in Nigeria. Therefore, it is time to take women empowerment and the girl-child education seriously.

Ibraheem Abdullateef,

@egghead_1995

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