The Kogi Government has directed the close down of all schools that refused to participate in the 2019 Annual School Census, the Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Rosemary Osikoya, has said.
Osikoya told the News Agency of Nigeria on Thursday in Lokoja, that all schools, both public and private, that intentionally refused to participate in the just concluded 2019 ASC would be closed down as from April 25.
NAN reports that the 2019 school census started in Kogi on April 15 and concluded on April 24.
Osikoya said that any school that intentionally refused to submit its data as at April 24 was deemed not to operate within the provisions of the law.
She said: “By Thursday April 25, we will seal the premises of all schools that refused to participate in the 2019 school census.
“This closure will take immediate effect from today. We will seal the schools until we are satisfied that they are okay to operate.”
The commissioner noted that the reports received at the end of the census showed that some schools intentionally failed to participate in the census.
According to her, the erring schools are presumed not to be under any form of supervision and having their own system that operates outside the provision of the State and Federal government education policies.
She said: “It means they must not be seen operating in Kogi. If you operate within our domain, you will have to comply with the state laws and policy that have been put in place.”
According to her, the law provides that there are statutory records that must be kept and required for the purpose of administrative planning and intervention.
She said: “The government will seal the premises of those erring schools until their management come back to the ministry to re-verify that they have the right approval to operate.”
The commissioner blamed the erring schools for holding back the state level performance appraisal in education, warning that “we will start shutting them down”.
She, however, commended the stakeholders, particularly the enumerators, evaluators and others for the success recorded during the census.
She said: “This is the first time in the history of the state that we are having a holistic coverage of all schools in the state. The data the ministry has, in term of the total number of schools in the state is 100 per cent accurate.”