The Association of Private School Owners of Nigeria (APSON), Akwa Ibom State Chapter on Tuesday, February 25, held her maiden Congress at St Thomases Schools, Uyo.
Chairing the Congress, the Chapter President of APSON, Mr Thomas Akpan called for unity among members being owners of private Schools operating in the State.
Akpan said APSON aims at fostering unity, good leadership among members, promoting members’ welfare, encouraging high standard of education as well as encouraging charitable activities and humanitarian services.
Other objectives of the Association as outlined by its Chairman are: inculcating good morals and values in pupils, students and teachers and sponsorship of sporting activities for private schools including collaboration with public schools.
Giving guidelines on requirements for identification with the group, Akpan stated that it was mandatory for every member of the Association to be duly registered with APSON for recognition and must also acquire her constitution in order to be well guided.
“For individual school registration and renewal of fees, APSON should first be consulted before monies are paid. Tax payment is not illegal but always consult APSON before making payment”.
He further enjoined private school owners to follow due process when admitting pupils or students into their schools. “No pupil or student should be allowed to skip a class anymore; and in a such case where a change of school is done, pupil or student should not be allowed to jump any class. Let due process be followed”, he said.
“This is because, government has complained that private schools contribute more to the decadence of educational system and it is true”, he explained.
Mr Akpan also posited that private schools ought to have a unified scheme of work for use all over the country including a unified examination for pupils and students at every level.
According to him, the unified scheme of work and examination is ready and awaiting endorsement for it to be adopted and its use effected.
Speaking at the Congress too, the Publicity Secretary, Mrs Victory Ebong said the Congress was held on the auspices of their desire for a change in the educational system especially that of Akwa Ibom State.
The Vice President of the group advised members to get their schools properly registered to avoid being closed down as projected by the state government.
According to her, “if all private schools are closed down, then the number if people in the labour market will skyrock. Even those advocating for the closure especially the government appointees will be mostly affected because they are the basic beneficiaries of our services as their children are taught and modeled by us and not in government schools.