Abuja — Some participants at the Canadian Education fair in Abuja on Monday advised parents to allow their children to mature before sending them to the university.
They said that parents should instead send their children, especially those going abroad to preparatory schools if they want them to be in the top rated universities.
In an interview, the Associate Director of Admissions, Ridley High School, Canada, Mrs Julie Cameron described the experience of young students abroad as "terrifying".
Cameron advised parents to let their children go through basic preparatory institutions that would mentor them to go into the university with confidence and make good certificates.
She said that apart from being adequately prepared for higher responsibilities of studies, the students would also have the opportunity of applying and getting scholarships, if they made good grades.
The educationist also said a programme like the International Baccalaureate (IB), for instance, would afford the student the opportunity to study a second foreign language and would give them versatility.
She said that with the IB, when they gained admission into the university, they would be exempted from some of the courses and would find it easy because they already passed through the programmes.
"I think the first thing they need to do as parents is to ask themselves if their children are ready to step into the stage with older ones," she said.
Cameron commended Nigerians studying in Canada saying "they are doing very well and have been very impressive."
Also speaking, the representative of Trinity College School, Canada, Mrs Tucker Barton, said that preparing students for university gave them confidence and direction.
She said that it would also provide them an insight into making career choices and excelling in their chosen course of study.
"Most of the students who come here tell us that they want to be doctors or I want to be an engineer and so many stuffs like that.
"And I tell them, I do not care what you read, just make sure you love what you do, not do what your parents want," Barton said.
On her part, the Director of Admissions of Rosseau Lake College also in Canada, Ms Lynda Marshall, said the importance of foundation for students could not be over emphasised.
Marshall, who described the Nigerian students in the college as "focused, ambitious and always willing to try something new, said that they can do better if they are mature to take on higher responsibilities."
The consultant for Bodwell High School in Canada, Mr Stephen Smith said a transitional school was very important in the educational development of a child.
"It enables them make friends, gain confidence before going into the university system.
"It is also an opportunity for them to apply for scholarships when they get good certificates," Smith added.
The Canadian Education Fair, which opened on Monday in Abuja, was also held in Lagos last week with the aim of showcasing Canadian schools and its system of education to Nigerians wishing to send their children abroad for studies. (NAN)