This work is a history of Islamic education in Ilorin from the colonial period to the first decade of the twenty-first century. It is a history of the adaptations of the ulama to the challenge of the modern period through three pedagogical schools Ilorin, namely: tolerant Adabiyyah School, the Zumratul Mu’meenina (makondoro) School that was strictly against western education in the early days and the third school, Markaziyya, privileging Arabic/Islamic education. This thesis argues that society’s attitude towards the system, absence of reliable state support and the weak financial wherewithal when compared with the western system are all connected as hindrance to progress in the system. Despite this limited capacity, the scholars have been unrelenting, continuously adapting the system to the needs of the society, such as transformation of the traditional Qur’anic schools into madaris (sing. madrasah) to running of the two educational systems within their madaris, especially from the late twentieth century. More than is credited to them the scholars have actually contributed to the development of western education even as the attention given to the western system of education by the government and the society has not been very encouraging to its own development.



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Aliyu Sakariyau Alabi