Case Studies

Helping community leaders support their school (Kaduna)

17/01/12  

Yakubu Shuaib, SBMC Chairman, LGEA Makaji Gari in Kaduna North

Yakubu Shuaib, SBMC Chairman LGEA Primary School, Magaji Gari, Kaduna North did not use to be concerned about what happened to his school. “Anybody could trespass on the school premises – for example ruffians could come and spoil the premises. If the roof blew off, we didn’t care because we believed it is government’s responsibility.” He was not alone in thinking this way. Now, however, as a result of the capacity building, mentoring and monitoring conducted by a partner Civil Society Organisation (CSO) and Social Mobilisation Officers, Yakubu says: “We now know that the schools belong to the community and the government is just there to help. So we have taken it upon ourselves to repair without going to government. There are projects that we normally waited for government to do but today we do it as community effort. We have achieved a lot and in the near future the school will be better. For example, the environment of the school is now beautiful and neat. Broken roofs and chairs are repaired through community efforts. Recently the wind blew off the roof and we replaced it immediately. If we write to the government, it will take a long time to get their response”.

Yakubu and his team are also contributing to increased enrolment. “We mobilise the children from their houses to get them enrolled and we make sure they attend school on time. We also visit the school to ensure that teachers attend classes. Between 7:30-8:30a.m. we’ll be at the gate and inspect the register to ascertain attendance. Our plan is to make public schools more attractive than private schools. I have six private schools near my school and if we can address the problems of the public schools, we’ll get our children back. We have started but we still have more work to do. We have undergone some mentoring and this has gingered us – we now understand our roles”.

Yakubu is just one of many transformed community members who now advocate and support their local schools as SBMC members. ESSPIN-DFID, has brought CSO and Social Mobilisation Officers of Kaduna SUBEB together to form a Civil Society and Government Partnership. This partnership is developing SBMC members’ skills and providing mentoring and monitoring support. Capacity development includes; understanding roles and responsibilities; child protection & participation; inclusive education; resource mobilisation; financial management; school development planning; relationship management and advocacy. Significant developments are now happening in Kaduna’s pilot schools.

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