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Education With Character - Jss & Sss Students Over Civilize Through Social Media Customary Court: An Educative Room Nigeria : A Country Of Cheap Tertiary Education Education
EDUCATION WITH CHARACTER - Jss & SSS Students Over Civilize Through Social Media by Starboy(m): Sat 16, October, 2021
Last term when we wanted to select a new set of prefects for our school we asked students in the SSS 1 and SSS 2 for their nominations for the offices of Head Boy/Assistant Head Boy and Head Girl/Assistant Head Girl. We also asked the outgoing class for a list of recommended prefects for each office in the school.

After collating the nominations we decided to interview three people each for office of head boy and head girl.

During our interview for head boy one of the nominees said he’d rather be the Uniform Prefect. The other two who had the highest nominations wanted the office, however the panel thought one of them was clearly a misfit. A brilliant student in his junior school days who had recently taken a nosedive academically and would struggle for articulation while communicating with students…he was just clearly popular among the students and leadership isn’t really about popularity. A no-no.

There was however this student playing on the minds of the selection committee, who wasn’t nominated by anyone for Head Boy – Hillary. He had gotten two nominations from the SSS 1 class for Assistant Head Boy and that was all. I thought he was the best man for the job. The other two teachers on the panel thought he was a great fit too. So we decided to take the only available good choice on the nominees list for Head Boy and approach Hillary for Assistant Head boy.

The next day we had a chat with him. “We need an Assistant Head Boy and we think you’d be great.” He said, no…he doesn’t think he could do the job. We asked him what he thought the job entailed and he gave his opinion. We asked him why he felt he couldn’t do it and he said he was Assistant Head Boy in primary school and he didn’t think he did a fine job…he thought he failed. An honest man.

Fair enough.

So we told him, it’s good you’re not happy with your performance in primary school, so you can learn from that experience and be better this time, you’re a long way from primary school after all and are better equipped to succeed now. Everyone on the panel thought you were the best man for Head Boy. You’re intelligent, creative, principled. You’ve got a drive no one in your class has, you’re the most articulate student in the school, the best ambassador we could have at external events. Your teachers believe in you, two junior students picked you for Assistant Head Boy, they believe in you…you should believe in yourself too and stop running away from responsibilities. Our school needs leadership and we don’t see anyone else in your class who can provide what we want. Besides we are not asking you to invent anything, just do what you normally do, and we will be here to support you.

He was sober, giving it deep thought.

We will give you a day to think about it and let us know. We would prefer you for Head Boy but since you aren’t so sure, plus the students overwhelmingly chose someone else, we would rather you assist him and provide the drive the office needs.

Then he said he doesn’t need a day, he’d take it if we said he could do it. He said perhaps we could see in him some things that he couldn’t see and he trusts our judgment.

All three of us on the panel were relieved.

Throughout the term Hillary provided stellar leadership even without trying to, it just listlessly flowed out. He was all over the place, carrying students along. He was a key part in designing programs for the term and allocating plans of actions of prefects to different weeks; He galvanized his mates to set questions for a Science Quiz Competition and was Quiz Master in the quiz organized by a collaboration of the offices of the Head Boy and Head Girl. He coordinated several activities and competitions on the assembly ground, providing student mentorship. I was proud of him.

On the last day of school last term I gave academic awards to outstanding students. And although we typically give Prefect of the Year in third term I had to break protocol to award Prefect of the Term because I was too impressed with the performance of this set in so short a time. The reception Hillary received when he was announced as Prefect of the Term was eloquent testimony that the students appreciated the fine leadership he’s been providing.

Personality awards have always been the biggest for me in my time here, always trumping our academic awards. Because an education without character is a dangerous kind of education. Our world needs great leadership at every turn and young people who provide solutions to problems within their tiny constituencies should be rewarded to reinforce a desirable value system.

I have no doubt Hillary will be running through brick walls this term too. He has to, I mean after flexing the 2000 naira that came with his award he has no choice. And by God we will be needing his drive with all the ideas we will be implementing this term.

School resumes tomorrow, and I can’t wait for my lads to return so we can slay the term.

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