I am sure; Seun (surname withheld) will not mind me publishing this reply which I sent him yesterday. You see, he kindly sent me an email (pasted below) and the epistle below (believe it or not was my reply). As I obviously got carried away, I thought it might come in very useful to many others out there in Seun’s position. Read and enjoy. Seun, thanks once again.
I do read your blog from time to time as I intend returning home sometime soon just as you did.
I must say first and foremost that your blog igives us a kind of encouraging insight most especially for my wife who’s so skeptical about Nigeria but is now seeing the better side of things out there.
Hopefully , I should be able to fit in well as i work here as a solicitor here in the UK and am also qualified in Nigeria as well.
My question relates to the secondary school you said your daughter attends back home which in your words she prefers to her former school in the UK.
I would be obliged if you provide me with the name of the school and also if it is mixed and with boarding facilities.
I have a 14 YEAR old who I believe would thrive better and shape up if he is schooling at home.
Thank you so much for your kind words.
First and foremost, I feel honoured and privileged to be at a vantage position to offer tips to Nigerians all over the world. Those of us, who have not given up on our dear country.
With regards your question. I live along the Lekki/Epe axis and the name of my daughter’s school is CHRISLAND HIGH SCHOOL, VGC and it is not boarding.
Chrisland is noted for its high standard and has a branch in VGC (Victorian Garden City). They were known more for their flagship school in Ikeja.
Having said that, I will not say it is the best out there. There are other schools, which may not be as expensive as Chrisland but offer value for money. I will advice you go around and check for yourself. Wives, without being biased have a better intuition for this type of search, if I must point out, just from experience.
Another thing I MUST point out is that, it can be very very tough going. In the sense that the child must be ready to buckle down to the nitty gritty of things here in Nigeria; Home work, Nepa, Traffic, Early rise, Repeating of class due to non- performance, Cani.g, Foul words, etc. They do not understand what political correctness is all about. The teachers can be obnoxious. The standard you have also paid for and expect may not be forth coming as expected.
You need to prepare the mind for all this.
There is also the competition aspect. As you would come to expect in Nigeria, they still believe education is all there is to life, hence the academic grinding.
We had to put the children through some kind of “preparation” if I would call it, before they sat for their entrance exams into the school.
We got a “lesson” teacher to introduce them to education in Nigeria. We quickly realised that we could not impact the children with the information they so badly required so soon. That was why we knew a real teacher would dish it out the way our children would experience it once they stared school.
Oh yes, they do seat for exams. So I must stress this. The education mentality in Nigeria is different from that of the UK and this must be shared with your child.
Another thing, cost. It isn’t cheap either. High school can cost as much as N260k per term, Primary school as much as N200k per term and pre school costs as much as N190K per term. I told you it’s not cheap.
As for the extra tuition, that is the “lesson teacher”, that will set you back by as much as N2k per hour. So get calculating, 2 hours a day for 3 days in a week, making 12 days in a 4 week calendar month will cost as much as N72k a month. Things are not cheap here. So you must consider all this, and also be a good haggler and negotiator to be able to survive in Nigeria.
My question to you! What exactly are your plans for your 14 year old child? Will it be to spend a year or to finish her secondary school in Nigeria or the UK? All this must be considered now. As for university in Nigeria, at the moment, FORGET IT!!!
All in all, I have no regrets whatsoever. It was the best thing my parents ever did for me, taking me back to Nigeria (from the UK) when I was younger, thereby giving me the added advantage of two views (UK and Nigeria). I hope I am replicating this for my children.
Have I bored you stiff?
If I have, I sincerely apologise, I got carried away as I had a few minutes to spare.
God bless you and warmest regards to wifey. Tell her, yes, it’s tough out here, but not bad at all.
Another tip for free, carefully consider one of you (I mean either yourself or your wife) coming first to check things out. It will make life easier and sweeter in the long run……
Also, leaving a comment on my blog would go a small way in getting feedback from you.
God bless Seun …
….and to you also for reading.