While some of us who are active educators will advocate for a new educational model that ensures the transfer of skills and creativity at a policy level, I think this change is already happening before our very own eye. Quality education has shifted from mere cognitive retention and regurgitation to pass a standardized exam.


Everyone is demanding more, but no one is giving what we want in a single bunch and we are desperately in need of a new normal in education. Whether we like it or not, this type of education has outlived its value, so we need a change. Come to think of it, almost everything around has changed in the last decades except education.


Look at the way we now communicate, look at how we now do business, financial sector, marketing, and so many other aspects of human life have experienced one form of change or the other. 


However, waiting for a single bunch of solution like we have it today in the brick and mortar classroom system to change the education sector may be a very long wait and may never come to fruition in this century. This is due to the fact that it will require a lot of policy and constitutional amendments that our leaders are not ready to dabble into at this time. 


Arguably, this model is already changing without the approval of policymakers and conformist. If you look closely, you will see that more preference is now placed on providing results through skills than paper certifications. Sadly, our schools at all levels can no longer cope with this change in terms of ensuring that the certificate we get is a reflection of the skill that we have.


And if you think this is a local problem, it is because you have not given yourself the permission to get exposed to what is happening on the international scale. Most creative educators that I know  are as well complaining of the current system.


For instance, in his book, the creative school, Dr ken Robinson said; “education is indeed our best hope. Not the old style of industrial education, which was designed to meet the need of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, but a new style of education suited to the challenges we now face and the real talents that lie deep within us all”.


Also, Sal Khan, the founder of Khan academy and author of the one world schoolhouse opined that “the old classroom model simply doesn’t fit our changing needs. It’s a fundamentally passive way of learning, while the World requires more and more active processing of information….. it isn’t clear that this was the best model 100 years ago; it certainly isn’t anymore”. 


Although, the difference between us and the western gurus is that they seem to be working on their own, looking for solutions to the problem, or at least talking about it at every single opportunity available. But as for us, ……….. (you fill in the blank space). 


Experts have argued repeatedly how this model of education and the methodology of delivery seems to stifle creativity and self-reliance instead of developing it. A common example around us is to look at a guy that got training in vulcanizing through apprenticeship for about 3 years.


What do you think he will do after he graduates from the training, he will never think of serving another boss, yet again, the next thing is for him to get his tools and begin to practice whatever he might have learnt and make a business out of it. However, consider another guy that went to the University for a minimum of 4 years to study mechanical Engineering, after convocation, the next thing that comes to mind is how to serve a boss, and he will do all he could to sell himself to any available boss by packaging his CV and if finally employed, his survival will be left largely at the mercy of his employer.


You then begin to wonder what the system has done to him in the University that makes him be completely dependent. This is not surprising to most of us as it is our reality.


Although, this reality is changing, and I want parents to really take note of this change and not place all their eggs in one basket as far as the education of their children is concerned.


Note that I only looked at this challenge at a broader scale, not at a microscopic level of curriculum, content, methodology, education leadership, etc. If we consider all these, then we will see that the damage is even worse and the need for change is inevitable. 


So, what is the change?


Since we cannot afford to wait for global or national policymakers to make the transformation, creative parents are already redesigning an education model for their children by giving them what I will call 360-degree opportunity.


So, they are not only adamant that their children have to be subjected to the mainstream education model, but also support them to develop a marketable skill with similar vigor. The good thing is, if you don’t want to get the hands of your children dirty by learning to become a mechanic, tailor, painter, plumber, etc, there are skills that can give a similar white-collar sensation like coding, graphic designing, web development, digital marketing, entrepreneurship, writing, etc.


Therefore, while in the case of Nigeria, the model is 6-3-3-4 system, you can remodel yours to be 6-3-3-2-4; 6 years in primary, 3 years in Junior secondary, 3 years in senior secondary, 2 years for skills, and 4 years in the University.


The good thing is, the 2 years for skill is modest, to ensure that their mainstream education is not affected much and the truth is, while they are in the University, they can be applying their skills to develop it and even make money where possible.


Remember I mentioned above that it is creative parents that are redesigning and not all parents, so, if you don’t like this idea and you want to stick to the status quo, it is fine. That means this is not for everybody, only for fractional few parents that would like to secure a productive future for their children and break away from the shackles of unemployment/unemployability. 


On a final note, it is a global fact that our current education model is no longer working as can be seen in various statistics of unemployment and unemployability.


Also, waiting for a monumental change may be an effort in futility. Hence, what creative parents are doing is to remodel the education of their children. I hope you will consider the same. 




Arikewuyo Abdulrafiu