The Kano State Governor, Dr Abdullahi Ganduje, on Tuesday pledged his commitment to addressing the issue of out- of-school children in the state.
Ganduje stated this while receiving education stakeholders led by Prof. Abba Haladu, Executive Secretary, National Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education (NMEC) in Kano.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the stakeholders are in Kano to celebrate the 2018 International Literacy Day.
The governor acknowledged that the state still had the highest number of out of school children despite having the highest number of children in public schools.
He said that the state had over three million children in public schools while almost three million were still out of school.
He attributed these figures to the influx of people to the state being the nerve centre of commercial activities.
Ganduje added that the state would continue to accommodate non-indigenes because they were all Nigerians.
”The number of children in school is over three million while we have the highest number of out of school children numbering almost three million.
“We are doing all we can to address the issue of out-of-school children; the answer to this is by integrating the curriculum to western form of education.
“Many of these Almajiri children can write and communicate in Arabic, so sometimes it is ironic to say they are illiterate, they are illiterate in western form of education and this is as a result of history,” he said.
The governor said that the state government was working to properly integrate the western education into the Islamic education system.
“I can assure you that we are doing the integration of western education by introducing Maths and English Language and very soon they (Almajiris) will qualify for common entrance,” he said.
Ganduje added that another way of ensuring all children were educated in the western form was by states to prevent movement of school age children from one state to another.
According to him, the state government is also doing a lot in that direction.
Earlier, Haladu thanked the state governor for accepting to host the 2018 literacy celebration and for his contribution to the formal and non-formal education sector.
He also noted that Kano State had the highest number of students in and out of school, adding that he believed the governor would address the issue.
“We know Kano state has three million children going to school but we also know they have the highest number of out-of-school children.
”But we know you will make sure the out of school children are mopped up and given the requisite skills for living in the 21st century,” he said.
NAN reports that the theme for this year’s literacy Day is “Literacy and Skills Development “
The Day is celebrated on Sept. 8 as declared by UNESCO and this year marks the 52nd anniversary.