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English Language Vs Local Dialect As Means of Teaching In Government Schools


As funny as it may sound, I’d say only most not all would agree with me that English is the official language in Nigeria. Reason for the division in agreement of populace is because agreeably, about 90% of Nigerians speak and understand Pidgin English fully; hence many see it personally as our own English formal language, case being judged as that the English men came to our country to enslave us.

Since the amalgamation, to the independence of Nigeria, English has been signed officially as the only official language, means of communication and interaction in all aspects and fields of livelihood amongst the populace of the citizens, regardless of those who don’t understand or even speak it. But asides the official language, we also have the commonly and well accepted “mother tongue”, language spoken in each geopolitical zones and even at that, still has branches i.e. tongues also vary in terms of tribe and regionally within states.

Education is popularly termed as; “the best legacy to give any child”, hence many children are at all cost enrolled by their parents in one environment of learning or school, be it private or government owned. Outlook has it that government owned schools are often more populated or alas we have increased number of students with the desire to learn, as government schools are known to be cheaper and affordable, interestingly government schools in the Northern part of the country even enroll their students for the qualification exams (BSCE, WAEC, NECO) for free.


All that said, the factual basis is that government schools are more populated than private schools, so our focus is on the government schools. Based on experience, research and findings, in many states across the country, government schools and their teachers are known to pass their teachings more comfortably in their mother tongue or local dialect, as they see it more easy means for the students to understand and catch up.

But this issue leaves us to the fact that how do these students compete, associate and negotiate with the world outside the walls of their hometowns? How do they get to progress or precede in their life events in the economy? Remember, English is the official language and means of communication in about 80% of countries around the world.

Not specifically stating any geopolitical examples nor negating the speaking or communicating in our various local dialects, but rationally the basics and essence to which children are enrolled in school is so as to meet up with the economic standard and also be a standout value amidst colleagues, based on my perspective though.

What’s your point of view on this? Local dialects method of teaching be abolished in government schools or encouraged?


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