Recent datasets have shed light on the dire state of Basic Education in Bauchi State, where a significant number of public schools lack teachers.
About 207 schools, spread across the twenty local government areas, are currently without teachers, representing approximately 6.30 per cent of the total number of public schools managed by both state and local government authorities.
The existing teaching force in the state comprises 16,503 male and female teachers. Among them, 9,104 are qualified male teachers, and 5,406 are qualified female teachers, making a total of 14,510 certified educators. However, the shortage of teachers remains a significant issue.
The statistics also revealed that Bauchi state faces challenges in the condition and availability of classrooms.
“While the total number of classrooms stands at 14,499, only 13,067 are usable, pointing to infrastructure concerns,” the report says.
Of utmost concern is the lack of certified teachers in English language, with 3,416 teachers possessing certification, representing 21 per cent of the teaching force.
There are merely 1,232 teachers certified in other Nigerian languages, accounting for 7.50 per cent of the total.
Recognising the pressing need for improvement, the USAID funded LEARN to Read project has advocated for the Bauchi State House of Assembly to allocate additional funds to Basic Education.
It stated that “The support from the assembly is crucial in addressing the myriad of challenges in the education sector and transforming the current negative situation.”
The Budget Planning and Policy Reform Specialist of the USAID-funded LEARN to Read project, Abdullahi Abubakar, highlighted the urgent need for the state assembly’s support during a two-day orientation for members of the assembly on their oversight roles.
To shed further light on the matter, the specialist presented data reflecting the state government’s expenditure on students in different levels of education.
The figures indicated a concerning decline in spending on primary, junior secondary, and senior secondary school students in the 2020/2021 school year compared to the previous year.
In light of the presented data, the Speaker of the Bauchi State House of Assembly, Abubakar Sulaiman, expressed shock and assured the 10th state assembly’s commitment to reversing the trend.
He emphasised the significance of the information gathered and pledged to bring about the necessary change to improve education in their constituencies.
The USAID’s LEARN to Read project focuses on ensuring that pupils in primary one and two can read and write in their immediate environment’s language, particularly Hausa language, which is vital for their foundational learning.
This project aims to make a positive impact on the education landscape in Bauchi state and enhance the future prospects of its young learners.