By Samuel Edu
Experts in the academia and girl child advocacy group have kicked against the decision of the Federal Government to remove Sex Education from the secondary school curriculum, saying it was ill informed.
They noted that the move was in the wrong direction, stressing that Sex Education entails several orientation and sensitisation modules, not the generally misconceived belief about sexual intercourse.
The federal government had on November 2, directed the Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC) to exclude Sex Education from the basic Education Curriculum.
The Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, who gave the directive, argued that Sex Education should be left in the hands of parents and religious institutions and not to be taught in schools in a manner that would further corrupt little children who are already having access to phones and technologies.
He emphasised that Nigeria is a religious country and as such the morals and values taught in the Church and Mosque in addition to efforts of the parents were enough to bring up a child with solid character.
Those who spoke with the Hope on why sex education should be retained in school curriculum include; Prof. Bayode Popoola, Dept of Education Foundations & Counselling, Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-Ife and his counterpart from the same department, Dr Adeola Shobola, Mrs Folashade Bamigboye, the CEO, Kids and Teens Resource Center.
Prof. Bayode Isaiah said government was wrong to have taken such decision, stressing that everyone both young and old needs sex education.
“Everyone needs sex education; it depends on the level and the way it is being handled. Sex Education is not all about sex; the government needs to be educated on this. When a child is growing up, you teach him/her the various parts of the body including the private parts.
Also, Dr Adeola Shobola, opined that government’s decision in such direction was ill-informed.
“I do not in anyway support government’s decision to remove sex education from the curriculum. Rather, the government should work on the modality of teaching it. It must be meaningful to the students, they must know what is called sex education and not going to the class to teach sexual intercourse because sex education goes beyond that.
“It entails personal hygiene; those things you should jealously guide and protect, how you form your boundaries and at what level do you report cases. So, I do not want to support its removal from the curriculum because it is vital and indispensable.”
Speaking in the same vein, Mrs Folashade Bamigboye said “the decision of the government to remove sex education from school curriculum was not well thought of.
“Sex education is not about teaching children how to have sex, rather, it is about educating children on scientifically correct information that will help them make informed decisions about their sexual reproductive health and right.
Ayotomiwa Ayodele, Executive Director, Media for Human Development Foundation, said “the mistake the government is making is that it failed to realize that these children know more than we think they know.
“For me, I believe the government’s move is in the wrong direction. It is better we teach these children, most adult today went through a lot of abuse because they were not taught what they needed to be taught in life on time. Hence, they face series of abuse and harassment from so called uncles and brothers.”