The educationist said students should be prevented from speaking vernacular in class.
Oluwakemi Waniko, the Managing Director, Scholars’ Quiz, has blamed poor spelling ability for the high rate of failure in English language in external examinations.
Ms. Waniko, who is also an educationist, made the assertion while speaking at the maiden Scholars’ Quiz Bee Spelling Competition, organised for primary schools in Ilorin on Monday.
She said most students are used to shortening of words while composing messages on the Internet and mobile phone. She added that some students, out of forgetfulness, also continued the habit while writing examinations thereby causing mass failure in English.
“Many schools pay lip services to English language; deliberate efforts are no longer made to discourage the speaking of pidgin English and vernacular in schools,’’ she said.
Ms. Waniko lamented that teachers no longer inspired their students to make proper use of English, stressing that no further efforts were being made for self-improvement. She said the competition was aimed at improving pupil’s spelling skills, vocabularies, concept learning and development of correct English, among others.
In his speech, Joseph Lawal, the chairman at the occasion, urged the pupils to take their studies seriously.
Mr. Lawal, who is the South-Western Regional Sales Manager of the FrieslandCampina WAMCO Nigeria Plc, the producer of Peak Milk, expressed his support for the competition.
Meanwhile, Julius Philips of St. Charles Nursery and Primary School, Ilorin, emerged winner of the competition, while Goodness Ishang of Flora Schools and Daniel Ajayi of the Kingdom Heritage Model School, came 2nd and 3rd respectively.
The winners went home with cash prizes, trophies, plaques and note pads, among others.
Twenty schools participated in the maiden Scholars’ Quiz spelling competition.