EFFECTIVE ENFORCEMENT OF EDUCATION LAWS by Nwabueze and Iheoma

IMPLICATIONS FOR EFFECTIVE ENFORCEMENT OF EDUCATION LAWS IN THE ADMINISTRATION OF SECONDARY SCHOOLS

Nwabueze, Akachukwu I. (Ph.D.)
Department of Educational Foundations, University of Nigeria, Nsukka
&
Iheoma, Chibuzo C.
Department of Educational Management, University of Port Harcourt, Rivers State

Abstract
This study investigated the implications for effective enforcement of education laws in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. Four research questions and four hypotheses guided the study. The research design was descriptive survey. Population of the study comprised all the 1,050 public senior secondary schools in South East, Nigeria with 1050 principals. A sample size of 250 principals was drawn from a population using the stratified random sampling technique representing 23.8%. The instrument used was questionnaire titled “Implications for Effective Enforcement of Education Laws in School Administration Questionnaire (IEEELSAQ)”. The instrument was validated and reliability test was carried out using test re-test method and the results of the tests were correlated with Pearson Product Moment Correlation, which yielded an index of 0.86. The research questions were answered using mean scores and standard deviation, while z-test was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 significant level. The study revealed among others that, teachers’ acts of misconduct that can be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability include: involvement of staff in unauthorized collection of money from students, staff involvement in assaulting students or fellow staff, staff involvement in the harassment of students sexually, and involvement of staff in forgery/mutilation of school official documents. The legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools include: suing principal that is responsible for indisciplinary actions in school if he violates the fundamental rights of the personnel in his school, and empowering principals to report cases of professional misconduct of staff to teachers’ disciplinary committee (TDC) otherwise sued for violation of fundamental human rights. Based on the findings, researchers recommended that teachers’ acts of misconduct should be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the school system for effective administrative performance in the schools.


Volume 15, No.3 Article 3

NEED FOR SKILL ACQUISITION IN DATABASE MANAGEMENT FOR SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN SOUTH EAST UNIVERSITIES FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA

 

Chigbu, BaptistaC hinyere, Onah, B.I, IbebuifeUgwu and C.A Obi

Department of Educational Foundation, Department of Computer and Robotic Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria, Department of Science Education, Madonna University Okija, Anambra State, Nigeria and Department of Business Education

 

Abstract

This study focused on the Need for Skill Acquisition in Database Management for Secondary school Student in South East Colleges of Education for sustainable development in Nigeria.  Three research question and three hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. The target population for this study was respondents comprising 251 Secondary school students. There was no sampling due to the manageable size of the population. A structured questionnaire was used to elicit the needed information from the Lecturers and Technical Instructors. The data collected were analyzed using mean and standard deviation to answer the research questions and independent t-test statistic to test the null hypothesis at 0.05 level of significance using SPSS version 20. From the analyses, it was found out that Skill Acquisition in Database Management include data definition language skill, data manipulation language skills and data control language skills among others. It was also found out that, the study also made recommendations such as the establishment of skill acquisition centers in every nook and cranny of the country to make the database management programme accessible to the students, the recruitment of competent and experienced lecturers and instructors to make database management programme more viable and streamline of the skill acquisition in database management programmes effective for the benefits of the unemployed graduates in Nigeria among others.

 

Keywords: skill acquisition, database management, secondary school, and sustainable development

 

It is quite glaring that no nation can develop without proper exploitation of her natural resources for the benefit of the people. The development of infrastructures (roads, railways, power, pipe borne water, communications, and healthcare, among others) is of paramount value to enhance the economy of such a nation. In order to make the economy grow, strong and stable in this era of economic recession, there is need to increase the productivity skills of all factors of production (land, labor, capital among others). Skill is very important in the life of every citizen.

Skill according to Ogundele, Feyisetan and Shaaba (2014) is the ability to do something well, usually gained through training or experience that needed. In the same view, Speelman (2005) further stated that a skill is seen as ability to do something well, usually gained through training or experience. Skill is like key used in opening door of fortune Skill is like key used in opening door of fortune. As water is very essential to human life; so is skill needed in the life of every serious minded human being. Skills can do a lot of great work in the life of every living soul. Lack of skills is a major cause of corruption. This skill can be obtained through education, training or experience that will inculcate into individual how to carry out or discharge effective responsibilities very well with the new knowledge. This is because any work carried out by skilled people cannot be compared with those tasks performed by unskilled people. When a skill is acquired in any discipline, it is assumed that the future gains that would result from it are of greater importance in terms of productivity.

Skill acquisition according to Speelman (2005) is the ability to learn or acquire skills. The author further states that skill acquisition involves the development of a new skill, practice of a way of doing things usually gained through training or experience. Furthermore, skill acquisition is the science that underpins movement learning and execution and is more commonly termed motor leaning and control (Williams & Ford, 2009). Skill acquisition refers to a form of prolonged learning about a family of events. Through many pairings of similar stimuli with particular responses, a person can begin to develop knowledge representations of how to respond in certain situations. Skill acquisition in the context of this study is the ability to be trained on a particular task or function (database management) and become expert in it. Skill acquisition aimed at bringing all students in Nigeria to promote basic trade skills and peaceful co-existence among voluntary organizations within Nigeria and across Nigeria.

Skill acquisition includes self-employment, diverse job opportunities, employment generation, effective function and crime reduction. A skill acquired man is a self-employed man. A self-employed person can never go hungry because the skill the person acquired provides food for him on daily basis. But one who lacks skill acquisition will find it difficult to be self-employed because the person has nothing to offer. Skill acquisitions were organized for promoting the capacities of the students for sustainable development. Skill acquisition reduces the crime rate in many nations. It also helps the society not to depend on white collar jobs, helps students to develop a positive attitude towards work and labour and it reduces poverty amongst members of the society. Students of secondary school should be encouraged to develop positive attitude towards skill acquisition in various fields of education such as database management among others.

Database management system is a computer software application that interacts with the user, other applications, and the database itself to capture and analyze data (Buelow, 2000). A general purpose database management system is designed to allow the definition, creation, querying, update and administration of database. The role of database management system both in Education and business cannot be over emphasized (Bock, 2007). The author further says that it manages data efficiently and allows users to perform multiple tasks with ease. Database management system maintains accuracy of information, improve data security among others. DBMS reduces data redundancy, enhance data integrity, improved flexibility of information, increase access and availability of data. In other to achieve these benefits of DBMS, students should undergo a training course in secondary school.

Secondary school is the process of acquiring the basic computer knowledge, ideas, skills, and other competencies so as to understand the basic terminologies, weaknesses of computers, potentialities of computers and how computers can be used to solve everyday problems (Onah& Obi 2015). The authors further stated that secondary school forms a part of the school and college curricula, as it is important for every individual today, to have the basic knowledge of computer. In the same vein, Onah, Agbo&Ukwueze (2016) buttressed that secondary school is designed to build familiarity with one of the most ubiquitous technologies of the 21st century. The level and depth of secondary school vary greatly, from that required by the occasional user to the needs of a deep-dive specialist. The subject matter is broad and encompasses a variety of disciplines. The acquisition of skills in database management is one of the disciplines in secondary school that will help students to be self employed after graduation.

Skill acquisition in database management system is regarded as very important issue in the educational context, especially for secondary school students (Batra and Antony 2004). The skill acquisition will help the students to diversify their job options such as working in the industries, banks, factories, companies, institutions among others. The authors further explain that acquisition of skills in database management system is an essential tool for reduction of unemployment and improving sustainable development in Nigeria. These database management system skills students’ needs to acquire include data definition language skills, data manipulation language skills, and data control language skills among others.

Data definition language (DDL) according to Shakir, (2009) is a standard for commands that define the different structures in a database. DDL statements create, modify and remove database objects such as tables, indexes, and users. The author further stated that it is also syntax similar to a computer programming language for defining data structures, especially database schemas. Data definition language skill is the ability gives commands that define the different structures in a database and also give statements to create, modify and remove database objects such as tables, indexes among others.

Data manipulation language (DML) according to (Weber, 2014) is a family of syntax elements similar to a computer programming language used for selecting, inserting, deleting and updating data in a database. On the other hands, Shankaranarayan, Mostapha and Richard (2003) stated that DML skill is the ability to select, insert, delete and update data in a database. This data manipulation involves inserting data into database tables, retrieving existing data, deleting data from existing tables and modifying existing data. DML seems like simple English language and enhances efficient user interaction with the system.

Further more Data Control Language (DCL) according to (Weber, 2014), is a subset of the Structured Query Language (SQL) that allows database administrators to configure security access to relational databases. However, DCL skill is the ability to grant, revoke and deny access to relational databases (Shankaranarayan et al, 2003). DCL complements the DDL, which is used to add and delete database objects and the DML, which is used to retrieve, insert and modify the contents of a database. DCL is the simplest of the SQL subsets, as it consists of only three commands: Grant, Revoke and Deny. Combined these three commands provide administrators with the flexibility to set and remove database permissions in an extremely granular fashion. Acquiring skills in this database management is one of the tools for sustainable development.

Sustainable development according Onah, Osondu, Agbo&Nwosu (2016), is the organizing principle for meeting human development goals while at the same time sustaining the ability of natural systems to provide the natural resources and ecosystem services upon which the economy and society depends. Onah et al further buttress that for sustainable development to be achieved, it is crucial to harmonise three core elements: economic growth, social inclusion and environmental protection. These elements are interconnected and are all crucial for the well – being of individuals and societies.

With the present situation of the banks, education, industries and other sectors, the activities provided through the use of database management has improved their security, data access, reduce data redundancy among others. It has also increase the data flow, economy and reduces the percentage of fraudster that hack databases. Secondary school students’ needs to acquire these skills in other to impact the knowledge to others after graduation and have diversified job opportunities and also to be self employed.

 

Statement of the Problem

University students are observed to be deficient in basic skills such as database management system skills which include data definition language skills, data manipulation language skills, data control language skills among others. They tend to develop the cognitive domain to the determent of psychomotor domain and effective domain. Thus we have students who are sound in knowledge but lack capacity for utilizing practical skills to solve problem. As such, students are involved more in memorization of concept, this has made them to be found wanting in performing practical oriented jobs. This has given rise to large number of unemployment youths who come into the labour market on yearly basis looking for white Collar jobs that in most cases are not in existence. Universities on their part have tried to bridge this deficiency gap by reviewing their curricular and tilting towards practical oriented courses. In spite of this attempt not much has been achieved as high numbers of unemployment graduates have remained unabated. It is on these bases that the problem of this study is stated thus: Need for Skill Acquisition in Database Management for Secondary school Student in South East Universities for sustainable development in Nigeria

 

Purpose of study

The purpose of this study is to find out the Need for Skill Acquisition in Database Management for Secondary school Student in South East Universities for sustainable development in Nigeria. Specifically, the study sought to identify the database management skill need for;

  1. Data definition language
  2. Data manipulation language
  3. Data control language

 

Research question

The following research questions guided the study:

  1. What are the needs for data definition language skills?
  2. What are the needs for Data manipulation language skills?
  3. What are the needs for data control language skills?

 

Hypotheses

Three null hypotheses were formulated to guide the study.

HO1: Year of study is not a significant source of difference between the mean ratings of students on the needs for data definition language skills

HO2: Location of the institutions is not a significant source of difference between the mean ratings of students on the needs for data manipulation language skills

HO3: There is no significant difference between the male and female students on the needs for data control language skills

 

Methodology

This study adopted a descriptive survey research design. According to Osuala in Onah et al (2016), survey research helps the researcher to identify present conditions, present needs as well as information on which to base sound decisions. The authors further stated that survey research focuses on people, the vital facts of people, and their beliefs, opinions, attitudes, motivation and behavior. Descriptive survey design is therefore considered most appropriate for this study because it sought opinions of respondents on the Need for Skill Acquisition in Database Management for Secondary school Student in South East Universities for sustainable development in Nigeria.

This study was carried out in South East universities that offer secondary school in their institutions namely: University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Ebonyi State University and Enugu State University of Science and Technology. The choice of this area was based on the fact that their people are hardworking but it was observed that many university graduates are unemployed. The universities have almost the same characteristics and present the same problems.  The population for this study consists of 251 respondents which comprised of third and final year students. The third and final year students were also chosen because they are at the verge of the study.  No sample was taken as the determined number was considered manageable. A structured questionnaire on the Need for Skill Acquisition in Database Management for Secondary school Student in South East Universities for sustainable development in Nigeria was used. The questionnaire was subjected to face validation by three experts.

The reliability of the instrument was established using Cronbach Alpha Formula. The internal consistency of the items was established by a single administration of the instrument to University of Lagos, Lagos State. The reliability coefficient of the sections all together was 0.91. Copies of the questionnaire were administered on the respondents with the help of eleven trained research assistants. The research assistants collected copies of completed questionnaire from the respondents after two week. A total of 206 copies (82%) out of 251 copies of the questionnaire items were returned. The data collected from the respondents were analyzed using mean, standard deviation and t-test statistics. The mean and standard deviation were used to answer the research questions. Any item with a mean rating of 2.50 and above was regarded as needed while any item with a mean rating less than 2.50 was regarded as not needed. The correlated t-test statistic was used to test the null hypothesis at 0.05 level of significance. Any hypothesis whose significance levels was less than or equal to 0.05 level of significance was rejected while a hypothesis with significance level greater than 0.05 level was not rejected.

 

Results

  1. Research Question 1: What are the needs for data definition language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria

Table 1: Mean, standard deviation and test of hypothesis of respondents (Male and Female) responses on the needs for data definition language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria,

S/N Items XM XF XG SD P-Value Remarks
              RQ HO
1 create two or more database tables 3.09 3.30 3.14 0.73 0.10 Needed NS
2 Process data in for easy access 3.16 3.02 3.13 0.83 0.33 Needed NS
3 Define data for management report 3.45 3.34 3.43 0.57 0.26 Needed NS
4 Record information for proper management 3.64 3.45 3.60 0.74 0.14 Needed NS
5 Control data and monitor progress 3.52 3.27 3.47 0.62 0.02 Needed S
6 Collect and analyse data on sales, costs and profit 3.43 3.49 3.44 0.50 0.47 Needed NS
7 Plan the objectives and flow of data for the organization 3.09 3.30 3.14 0.73 0.10 Needed NS

Key: XM = mean of the male students, XF = mean of the female students, XG = grand mean, SD = Standard deviation, NS = Not significant, S = significant *N = 206*

 

Data presented in Table 1 showed that the mean ratings of the responses of the respondents on the 7 identified items relating to the needs for data definition language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria had mean values ranging from 3.13 to 3.60 which are all greater than the cut-off point of 2.50 on a 4-point rating scale. The data in the table indicated that the respondents needed that all the 7 items could be the needs for data definition language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria. The standard deviation values for the fourteen items ranged from 0.50 to 0.83 which showed that the respondents were not far from one another in their responses and that their responses were not far from the mean. The table also showed that the p-values of the items 1,2,3,4,6, and 7 ranged from 0.10 to 0.47 which were greater than 0.05 level of significance and 204 degrees of freedom. This showed that there was no significant difference (P>0.05) between the mean responses male and female students with regards to the needs for data definition language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria while the item 5 is 0.02 which was less than 0.05 level of significance. This showed that there is significance difference between the mean responses of the respondent on the 1 identified item.

Research Question 2: What are the needs for Data manipulation language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria

 

Table 2: Mean, standard deviation and test of hypothesis of respondents (Male and Female) responses on the needs for Data manipulation language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria.

S/N Items XM XF XG SD P-Value Remarks
              RQ HO
1 Insert new records of information in a database table 3.45 3.34 3.43 0.56 0.25 Needed NS
2 Modify data values in the customer’s database table 3.64 3.45 3.60 0.73 0.13 Needed NS
3 Update data values in the customer’s database table 3.52 3.27 3.47 0.62 0.01 Needed S
4 Make data type of each column to match with the value 3.42 3.48 3.44 0.49 0.46 Needed NS
5 Use delete statement in the database 3.09 3.29 3.14 0.73 0.10 Needed NS
6 Retrieve customer data from the database 3.16 3.02 3.13 0.83 0.33 Needed NS
7 Update the employees’ salary 3.45 3.34 3.43 0.56 0.25 Needed NS
8 Insert the details of a new employee in the organization’s database 3.64 3.45 3.60 0.73 0.13 Needed NS
9 Give recruitment, promotion and demotion details in the database 3.52 3.27 3.47 0.62 0.01 Needed S

Key: XM = mean of the male students, XF = mean of the female students, XG = grand mean, SD = Standard deviation, NS = Not significant, S = significant

 

Table 2 Data presented in Table 2 showed that the mean ratings of the responses of the respondents on the 9 identified items relating to the needs for Data manipulation language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria had mean values ranging from 3.13 to 3.60 which are all greater than the cut-off point of 2.50 on a 4-point rating scale. The data in the table indicated that the respondents needed that all the 9 items are the needs for Data manipulation language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria. The standard deviation values for the eighteen items ranged from 0.49 to 0.83 which showed that the respondents were not far from one another in their responses and that their responses were not far from the mean. The table also showed that the p-values of the items 1,2,4,5,6,7, and 8 ranged from 0.10 to 0.46 which were greater than 0.05 level of significance and 204 degrees of freedom. This showed that there was no significant difference (P>0.05) between the mean responses on the needs for Data manipulation language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria while the items 3 and 9 ranged from 0.01 to 0.02 which were less than 0.05 level of significance. This showed that there is significance difference between the mean responses of the respondent on the 2 identified items.

 

Research Question 3: What are the needs for data control language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria

 

Table 3: Mean, standard deviation and test of hypothesis of respondents (male and female students) responses on the needs for data control language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria,

S/N Items XM XF XG SD P-Value Remarks
              RQ HO
1 Grant permission to others to have access to the institution/ organization database 3.45 3.34 3.43 0.57 0.26 Needed NS
2 Revoke access to the institution/organization database 3.64 3.45 3.60 0.74 0.14 Needed NS
3 Deny access to the institution/organization database 3.52 3.27 3.47 0.62 0.02 Needed S
4 Prevent unauthorized access in database 3.43 3.49 3.44 0.50 0.47 Needed NS
5 Remain information intact/unaltered between updates in database management 3.09 3.30 3.14 0.73 0.10 Needed NS
6 Gain competitive advantage, both brand, value and reputation 3.16 3.02 3.13 0.83 0.33 Needed NS
7 Protect against mistakes and data leaks 3.45 3.34 3.43 0.57 0.26 Needed NS
8 Reduce data redundancy and data loss 3.64 3.45 3.60 0.74 0.14 Needed NS

Key: XM = mean of the male students, XF = mean of the female students, XG = grand mean, SD = Standard deviation, NS = Not significant, S = significant

Data presented in Table 3 showed that the mean ratings of the responses of the respondents on the 8 identified items relating to the needs for data control language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria had mean values ranging from 3.13 to 3.60 which are all greater than the cut-off point of 2.50 on a 4-point rating scale. The data in the table indicated that the respondents agreed that all the 8 items is the needs for data control language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria. The standard deviation values for the ten items ranged from 0.50 to 0.83 which showed that the respondents were not far from one another in their responses and that their responses were not far from the mean. The table also showed that the p-values of the items 1,2,4,5,6,7 and 8, ranged from 0.10 to 0.47 which were greater than 0.05 level of significance and 204 degrees of freedom. This showed that there was no significant difference (P>0.05) between the mean responses of male and female students with regards to the needs for data control language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria while the item 3 is 0.01 which were less than 0.05 level of significance. This showed that there is significance difference between the mean responses of the respondent on the 1 identified item

 

Discussions

The 3 Research Questions were answered using mean and standard deviation while the null hypotheses were tested using T-test statistics as evident in Tables 1 to 3. Indications in the statistical analysis of Table 1 shows that, creating tables, defining and processing data, collecting and analyzing data together with planning the objectives and flow of data are needs for Data Definition Language skills whichOlle (1978) described as a formal language used to define data structures and could be mainly classified under Create, Alter, or Drop commands. However controlling data and monitoring progress are not considered as needs for skills as there are significant differences in the opinions of male and female respondents. This is also in line withWeinerg and Cherny (2016) who indicated that most commercial Structured Query Language (SQL) systems implement Data Definition Language (DDL) which allows designers to create new table and implement other associated commands (like Alter and Drop).

The analysis of Table 2 indicates that inserting new records, modifying data, updating and retrieving data are needs for Data Manipulation Language skills for sustainable development in Nigeria. However, the male and female students need to improve on updating data value in customers’ database table and also giving recruitment, promotion and demotion details in database as needs for sustainable development in Nigeria. This is in line with Tiffany (2003) who opines that Data Manipulation Language (DML) should specify how data is inserted, updated, retrieved and deleted in objects defined at Data Definition Language stage.

The analysis of Table 3 indicates that granting permission, revoking accesses to institutional/ organizational databases, preventing unauthorized accesses in database, securing information and reducing data redundancy are needs for Data Control Language (DCL) skills for sustainable development in Nigeria. This is supported by Masood-Al-Farooq (2014) who views Data Control Language to be of three classes of commands namely: Grant, Deny and Revoke, into which categories, various other control commands fall. Again Goel et al (2016) sees DCL as one dealing with the management of roles, permission and privileges as basic skills, which is the main idea of this paper regarding DCL. However, there is need for DCL skill in denying access to institution/ organizational database among male and female students for sustainable development in Nigeria.It is therefore evident that Secondary school Teachers/Lecturers as well as students can employ various methods/measures to improve skill acquisition in Database Management.

 

Recommendations

  1. Secondary school Lecturers should make effort to encourage both male and female student to put in effort in improving the acquisition of skills in
    1. Updating data values in customers’ databases
    2. Giving recruitment, promotion and demotion details in databases
    3. Denying unauthorized accesses to institutional or organizational databases
  2. Male and female students as well as their Lecturers should use various methods for skill acquisition in database creation and management.

 

Conclusions

The conclusion from the findings is that there are deviated view among male and female students on the need for Database management skills in updating data values in customers’ databases, giving recruitment, promotion and demotion details in databases, and denying unauthorized accesses to institutional or organizational databases.

 

References

Batra, D. & Athony, S.R. (2004). Novice Errors in Conceptual Database Design. European Journal of Information System Volume 3 no 1

Bock, D.B. (2007). Entity-Relationship Modeling and Normalization Errors. Journal of Database Management

Buelow, R. (2000). The Folklore of Normalization. Journal of Database Management

Goel, A., Desai, A. I., Gupta, R., Ghosh, S., &Vadodaria, H. (2016).U.S. Patent No. 9,298,933. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Masood-Al-Farooq, B. A. (2014). SQL Server 2014 Development Essentials. UK: Packt Publishing Ltd.

Ogundele, A.G., Olanipekun, S.S, &Aina, J.K. (2014), Students’ Proficiency in English Language Relationship with Academic Performance in Science and Technical Education American Journal of Educational Research 1, no 9

Olle, T. William (1978). The Codasyl Approach to Data Base Management. Wiley

Onah, B.I & Obi, C.A:  (2015): Assessment Of The E-Learning Skills Needs Of Secondary school Students In The South-East Universities In Nigeria. International Journal of Education Research

Onah, B.I, Osondu, S.I, Agbo, G. C. &Nwosu, F.O. (2016). Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Skills Needed of Secondary school Lecturer for Effective Teaching of Database for sustainable Development in South East Universities, Nigeria. Journal of Association of Vocational and Technical Educators of Nigeria (JAVTEN),

Onah, B.I., Agbo, G.C &Ukweze, F.N (2016). E-learning skills required for digital empowerment of university students for effective learning in developing countries. International Journal of Scientific and Engineering Research ,

Shankaranarayan, G., Mostapha, Z & Richard, W. (2003), Managing data quality in dynamic decision environments: An information product approach. Journal of Database Management

Weinberg, P. N., &Cherny, E. (2016). U.S. Patent No. 9,495,475. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Tiffany, R. (2003). Data Manipulation Language. In SQL Server CE Database Development with the. NET Compact Framework (pp. 139-179). NY: Apress


Volume 15, No.3 Article 1

IMPLICATIONS FOR EFFECTIVE ENFORCEMENT OF EDUCATION LAWS IN THE ADMINISTRATION OF SECONDARY SCHOOLS

 

Nwabueze, Akachukwu I. (Ph.D.)

Department of Educational Foundations, University of Nigeria, Nsukka

&

Iheoma, Chibuzo C.

Department of Educational Management, University of Port Harcourt, Rivers State

 

Abstract

This study investigated the implications for effective enforcement of education laws in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.  Four research questions and four hypotheses guided the study. The research design was descriptive survey. Population of the study comprised all the 1,050 public senior secondary schools in South East, Nigeria with 1050 principals.  A sample size of 250 principals was drawn from a population using the stratified random sampling technique representing 23.8%. The instrument used was questionnaire titled “Implications for Effective Enforcement of Education Laws in School Administration Questionnaire (IEEELSAQ)”. The instrument was validated and reliability test was carried out using test re-test method and the results of the tests were correlated with Pearson Product Moment Correlation, which yielded an index of 0.86. The research questions were answered using mean scores and standard deviation, while z-test was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 significant level. The study revealed among others that, teachers’ acts of misconduct that can be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability include: involvement of staff in unauthorized collection of money from students, staff involvement in assaulting students or fellow staff, staff involvement in the harassment of students sexually, and involvement of staff in forgery/mutilation of school official documents. The legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools include: suing principal that is responsible for indisciplinary actions in school if he violates the fundamental rights of the personnel in his school, and empowering principals to report cases of professional misconduct of staff to teachers’ disciplinary committee (TDC) otherwise sued for violation of fundamental human rights. Based on the findings, researchers recommended that teachers’ acts of misconduct should be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the school system for effective administrative performance in the schools.

 

Introduction

Schools are established to facilitate learning through teaching, research and administration of which the principals and teachers are duty-bound to accomplish the objectives of education for institutional competitiveness. They must put all their efforts into the process to ascertain that considerable changes occur in the students through teaching, research, administration and community service for individual growth and societal development. Asuru (2007) is of the opinion that, educational activities, programmes and procedures can be adequately ordered and controlled by relevant laws that guide the system. This is necessary for the timely elimination of unwanted acts of misconduct in the system. In that vein, infamous conducts, fraudulent registration, forgery, mutilation of official documents, fighting, stealing, intimidation, sexual harassment, examination misconduct, illegal collection of money, and disobedience can be checked and their impacts minimized, if not completely eradicated (Gladday, 2012).

The legal rights of a Nigerian child are contained in various municipal laws and international instruments, and these laws are based on certain fundamental principles relating to the promotion of child survival; prevention of harm to children and young persons, promotion and sustenance of Child dignity and the enhancement of Child development. These principles recognize the basic concept that the Child is the foundation of the society and he or she assures its continuity. Accordingly, the survival and the continuity of the human society depend upon the protection; prevention, nurture and development of the child (Gladday, 2012).

Law provides a framework for group relations and serves as a system for social control through regulation of human activities for the purpose of harmony in the society. The aspect of law that concerns schools is education law.  Igwe (2003) notes that, education laws border on a wide range of legal subjects including tort, constitutional law, contracts, property and other areas that affect the operation of schools.  Some of the laws that affect stakeholders in schools can be said to be education laws, which include Child Rights Act 2003, Examination Malpractices (Degree No. 3 of 1999) Act, CAP. E15, LFN, 2004, chapter 4, Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, CAP. C 23, LFN, 2004.

Education laws guide the administrative and academic activities of an educational institution. Peretomode (2001) sees education laws as those areas of jurisprudence which focus on educational activities in institutions of learning.  He quotes Alexander who sees education laws as ‘a generic term covering a wide range of legal subject matter including the basic fields of contracts, property, torts, constitutional law and other areas of law which directly (or indirectly) affect the educational and administrative processes of the educational system’. He concludes that education law is more than educational edicts and regulations. Education laws are important because they provide a legal framework for the activities done in the school (Agabi & Ukala, 2005).

Education laws can be seen as those laws enacted specifically for the planning, organisation, administration, facilitation and control of the education industry. They are very important in the educational institution as a social organisation with staff, students and groups as stakeholders that work together for the attainment of educational objectives. Education laws majorly focused on the legal doctrine of in loco parentis and legal doctrine of vicarious liability for proper maintenance of discipline among staff and students. Education law deals with the sources of funding that school organizations use to acquire resources, as well as the requirements teachers and other faculty and staff must meet to be certified, trained, hired, retained, and fired. It also covers any form of discrimination in the field of education, whether in the hiring process or in the process of educating students. One example of how education law impacts individuals is the ruling that disabled individuals cannot be discriminated against in the educational process, and must be given all reasonable accommodations necessary to allow them to learn the same subjects in the same facilities as students who are not disabled. Education law handles issues involving teachers’ unions and the segregation of students. These education laws are generally followed and enforced by Federal and State Ministry of Education.

Although, it is important that there is a policy to guide and regulate the operations of the system towards the achievement of set goals, it is equally more important that this policy is implemented. The implementation of this policy lies in the activities done in the schools by the active members of the school community (the principals, teachers and learners).  For these stakeholders to keep up to what the society expects from them, they need to work in a conducive atmosphere. Thus, law prevents a state of anarchy and provides the enabling environment for the stakeholders in the education industry to prove their best.  The absence of these laws would mean anarchy, a state of lawlessness because the level of indiscipline among these stakeholders would be high (Gladday, 2012). Moreover, where there are no laws in schools, teachers and students may not keep to their legal obligations.  Therefore, for effective administration of schools in Nigeria, principals must see to the enforcement of education laws so as to create the needed atmosphere for the actualization of the operational goals of the schools translated from the National Policy on Education (Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2004).

School discipline is an essential element in school administration. This is because discipline is a mode of life in accordance with laid down rules of the society to which all members must conform and the violation of which are questionable and also disciplined. It is seen as a process of training and learning that fosters growth and development (Imaguezor, 1997). The aim of discipline is therefore, to help the individual to be well adjusted, happy and useful to his society. The doctrine of school discipline according to Nakpodia (2009), is based on the concept of “in loco parentis” which equips school authorities with full responsibility for children’s upbringing, the right of discipline and control. In effect, teachers have the right to punish students who contravene school laws. The doctrine of in loco parentis had been based on the assumption that by sending their children to school, parents agree to delegate to school officials the power or parental authority to control their children’s conduct in a manner that will be of best interest to the child (Nakpodia, 2011).

Equally, the legal principle of vicarious liability applies to hold one person liable for the actions of another when engaged in some form of joint or collective activity. The law of tort has been used for many centuries to protect personal interests such as property,reputation, body etc. It ensures justice is done by looking into the claimant’s need forcompensation, which is paid by the defendant who has committed a breach of duty. However, in certainscenarios, the law makes one person being liable for the harm caused by another, because ofsome legally relevant relationship between the two. This is known as the doctrine of vicariousliability.

The legal arm of Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria is saddled with the responsibility to discipline erring teachers. The following are listed as acts, commission or omission adjudged to be misconduct (TRCN, 2007): forgery or mutilation of official document, fighting in or within the school premises, assaulting a student or a teacher, abuse of a student or a teacher, intimidation of student(s), harassment (sexual or otherwise), habitual late comer, unauthorized absenteeism, taking undue advantage of students or teachers, illegal or unauthorized collection of money from students, facilitating, aiding, abetting or assessor to examination malpractice, irregular or unauthorized award of marks, bribery (giving or taking), disobedience of lawful order, stealing, extortion from students, money for marks racket, sex for marks racket, employing unqualified teachers, teaching with non-qualifying or unrecognized certificate, and teaching without registration with TRCN.

To promote the enforcement of education laws, the principal must involve parents and teachers in decision-making, which is a consultative style (Everard, Geoffrey & Wilson, 2004; John & Earl, 2003; Dean, 1993).  For example, the law on punctuality would be effective if teachers collectively discuss the importance of punctuality.  This is necessary because the essence of education law is to prevent conflict. Conflict would only be prevented through the involvement and commitment of members of the school community in conflict prevention.

Typical disciplinary measures include detention, time out or isolation, alternative education programmes in or outside the student’s school, denial of participation in school activities, and verbal reprimand or chastisement (Gladday, 2012). Generally, secondary school will be required to adopt policies that are reasonably designed to address whatever problem they face. The reasonableness standard requires that school principals balance the need to make the school environment safe and maintain order and control with the student’s interest in privacy, access to education, and autonomy.

 

Statement of the Problem

Students as priceless assets and most essential elements in education industry need to be directed to exhibit acceptable attitude and behaviour within and outside the school system. In an attempt to achieve an organized and peaceful school environment and maintain law and order, school management specifies rules and regulations to guide the activities of members of the educational institution.       Students’ indiscipline seems to be ubiquitous in the 21st century in Nigerian secondary schools. This may accrue from the recent increase in school enrolment and poor training happening in most schools. Students’ indiscipline has plagued schools leading to series of unrest. It is observed that students resort to unconstitutional measures in channeling their grievances; and it is not unusual that schools have been blamed for the awkward and uncivilized behaviour demonstrated by the students. Examination malpractices, sexual harassment, forgery, extortion, unauthorized absenteeism, mutilation of official document, bribery, and stealing, illegal or unauthorized collection of money from students are some acts that may be perpetrated by teachers in schools. These acts of misconduct by teachers undermine the goals of Nigerian educational system. This study therefore, investigates the implications for effective enforcement of education laws in the administration of secondary schools, with major focus on students’ acts of indiscipline, teachers’ acts of misconduct, legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration, and legal measures that would enhance the enforcement of education laws for the effective administration of secondary schools.

 

Aim and Objectives of the Study

The aim of this study is to investigate the implications for effective enforcement of education laws in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. Specifically, the objectives of this study include to:

  1. determine how students’ acts of indiscipline could be curtailed by the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria;
  2. ascertain how teachers’ acts of misconduct could be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria;
  3. examine the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria; and
  4. find out the legal measures that would enhance the enforcement of education laws for the effective administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.

 

Research Questions

The following research questions have been posed to guide and direct this study:

  1. How can students’ acts of indiscipline be curtailed by the application of the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria?
  2. In what ways can teachers’ acts of misconduct be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria?
  3. What are the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria?
  4. What are the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for effective administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria?

 

Hypotheses

Based on the above research questions, the following hypotheses have been formulated to guide this study.

  1. There is no significant difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on ways students’ acts of indiscipline could be curtailed by the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.
  2. There is no significant difference between the mean scores of principals in rural and urban schools on the ways teachers’ acts of misconduct could be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.
  3. There is no significant difference between the mean scores of principals in rural and urban schools on the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.
  4. There is no significant difference between the mean scores of male and female principals on the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for effective administration of secondary schools South East, Nigeria.

 

Methodology

The research design was descriptive survey. Population of the study comprised all the 1,050 public senior secondary schools in South East, Nigeria with 1050 principals.  This included 700 male and 350 female principals. A sample size of 250 principals was drawn from a population using the stratified random sampling technique representing 23.8%.  In doing so, 50 principals were drawn from each of the five states in South East, Nigeria involving 175 principals from Rural Areas and 75 principals from Urban Areas; 176 of them are males while 74 are females. The instrument used was questionnaire tagged “Implications for Effective Enforcement of Education Laws in School Administration Questionnaire (IEEELSAQ)”. The questionnaire had two sections: sections A & B. Section A is demographic data containing information such as Sex and school location. Section B contained questionnaire items structured based on the major variables of the study. The modified Likert’s rating scale was applied to the responses of the items. The responses were based on the following order: Strongly Agree (4), Agree (3), Disagree (2) and Strongly Disagree (1). The instrument was validated and reliability was carried out using test re-test method and the results of the tests were correlated with Pearson Product Moment Correlation, which yielded an index of 0.86. The research questions were answered using mean and standard deviation and z-test was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 significant level.

 

Results

Research Question 1: How can students’ acts of indiscipline be curtailed by the application of the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria?

 

Table 1: Mean Scores of Principals in Rural and Urban Schools on the ways students’ acts of indiscipline can be curtailed by the application of the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of schools

S/N Curtailment of Students’ Acts of      

Indiscipline

Urban (75) Rural  (175)
Mean St. D Mean St. D
1 Systematic application of corporal punishment in schools helps in curtailing students’ acts of indiscipline 3.26 0.78 3.35 0.50
2 Stating the school rule clearly helps to reduce the level of students’ involvement in indisciplinary acts 3.16 0.79 3.22 0.51
3

 

The use of suspension when students go contrary to the school rules helps in curtailing students’ acts of indiscipline 3.24 0.78 3.28 0.51
4

 

Principals’ exercising absolute control over the students helps in curtailing students’ acts of indiscipline 3.05 0.80 3.10 0.52
5 Principals and teachers showing good example in the school system assists in curtailing student’s indisciplinary acts 3.20 0.78 3.22 0.51
                 Aggregate Mean Scores and St. D 3.18 0.79 3.23 0.51

 

Data on Table 1 presented the mean scores and standard deviation on the ways students’ acts of indiscipline can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. The respondents agreed on all the items in the table with mean scores above the mean criterion of 2.5. The aggregate mean scores of 3.18 for principals in urban schools and 3.23 for principals in rural schools indicated that, students’ acts of indiscipline can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools through systematic application of corporal punishment in schools, stating the school rule clearly helps to reduce the level of students’ involvement in indisciplinary acts, the use of suspension when students go contrary to the school rules, principals’ exercising absolute control over the students, and principals and teachers showing good example in the school system.

 

Research Question 2: In what ways can teachers’ acts of misconduct be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria?

 

Table 2: Mean Scores of Principals on How Teachers’ Acts of Misconduct be Curtailed by the Enforcement of the Legal Doctrine of Vicarious Liability in the Administration of Secondary Schools

S/N Teachers’ Acts of Misconduct Urban Rural
Mean St. D Mean St. D
6 Involvement of staff in unauthorized collection of money from students can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of vicarious liability 3.21 0.78 3.23 0.51
7 Staff involvement in assaulting a student or a fellow staff can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of vicarious liability 3.09 0.80 3.12 0.52
8 Staff involvement in the harassment of students sexually can equally be curtailed by the legal doctrine of vicarious liability 3.14 0.79 3.30 0.50
9

 

Involvement of staff in forgery/mutilation of school official documents can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of vicarious liability 3.07 0.80 3.11 0.52
10 Staff involvement in extortion from students can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of vicarious liability 3.22 0.78 3.27 0.51
11 Unauthorized absenteeism among staff can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of vicarious liability 3.18 0.79 3.25 0.51
12 Staff involvement in fight/quarrel within the school premises can be encouraged by the legal doctrine of vicarious liability 0.57 1.09 0.38 0.73
13 Staff participation in examination malpractices/misconducts can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of vicarious liability 3.30 0.77 3.39 0.49
                 Aggregate Mean Scores and St. D 2.85 0.83 2.88 0.54

 

Data on Table 2 shows the mean scores and standard deviation on the ways teachers’ acts of misconduct be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. Respondents agreed on items 6-11 and 13 with mean scores above the mean criterion of 2.5, and disagreed on item 12 as stated in the table. The aggregate mean scores of 2.85 for school principals in urban areas and 2.88 for school principals in rural areas showed that, teachers’ acts of misconduct that can be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability include: involvement of staff in unauthorized collection of money from students, staff involvement in assaulting a student or a fellow staff, staff involvement in the harassment of students sexually, involvement of staff in forgery/mutilation of school official documents, staff involvement in extortion from students, unauthorized absenteeism among staff, staff involvement in fight/quarrel within the school premises, and staff participation in examination malpractices/misconducts.

 

Research Question 3: What are the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria?

 

Table 3: Mean Scores of Principals on the Legal Implications of the Principals’ Role Performance in the Enforcement of Students’ Fundamental Rights in the Administration of Secondary Schools

S/N Legal Implications of the Principals’ Role Performance in the Enforcement of Students’ Fundamental Rights include: Urban Rural
Mean St. D Mean St. D
14 Principal who is responsible for indisciplinary actions in school can be sued for violation of fundamental human rights 3.10 0.79 3.12 0.52
15 Principal can be sued in a court of law if he violates the fundamental rights of the personnel in his school 3.19 0.78 3.23 0.51
16

 

He can be equally sued in a court of law if a teacher under his command violates the fundamental rights of students 3.25 0.78 3.29 0.51
17

 

Principal  that fails to enforce discipline in teachers and students would face the legal doctrine of vicarious liability 3.42 0.76 3.46 0.49
18 Principals are empowered to report cases of professional misconduct of staff to teachers’ disciplinary committee (TDC) otherwise sued for violation of fundamental human rights 3.31 0.77 3.26 0.51
                 Aggregate Mean Scores and St. D 3.25 0.78 3.27 0.51

 

Data on Table 3 presented the mean scores and standard deviation of principals on the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. The respondents agreed on all the items in the table with mean scores above the mean criterion of 2.5. The aggregate mean scores of 3.25 for principals in urban schools and 3.27 for principals in rural schools indicated that, the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria include: suing principal that is responsible for indisciplinary actions in school, if he violates the fundamental rights of the personnel in his school, if a teacher under his command violates the fundamental rights of students, principal’s  failure to enforce discipline in teachers and students faces the legal doctrine of vicarious liability, and principals are empowered to report cases of professional misconduct of staff to teachers’ disciplinary committee (TDC) otherwise sued for violation of fundamental human rights.

 

Research Question 4: What are the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for effective administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria?

 

Table 4: Mean scores of male and female principals on the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for effective administration of secondary schools

S/N Legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for effective administration of secondary schools include: Female (74) Male (176)
Mean St. D Mean St. D
19 Principals’ involvement in creating awareness on stipulations of TRCN on the acts of misconduct by teachers 3.22 0.78 3.33 0.50
20 Enforcement of  education laws through the use of a good supervisory technique by principals 3.37 0.77 3.47 0.49
21

 

Providing good welfare packages for the teachers by the government 3.45 0.76 3.50 0.48
22

 

Full commitment by teachers’ disciplinary committee can make a difference 3.12 0.79 3.17 0.52
23 Conscientious implementation of teachers’ professional ethics and codes of conduct 3.41 0.76 3.49 0.49
                 Aggregate Mean Scores and St. D 3.31 0.77 3.39 0.50

 

Data on Table 4 presented the mean scores and standard deviation of principals on the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for effective administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. The respondents agreed on all the items in the table with mean scores above the mean criterion of 2.5. The aggregate mean scores of 3.31 for female principals and 3.39 for male principals indicated that, the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for the effective administration of secondary schools include: principals’ involvement in creating awareness on stipulations of TRCN on the acts of misconduct by teachers, enforcement of  education laws through the use of a good supervisory technique by principals, providing good welfare packages for the teachers by the government, full commitment by teachers’ disciplinary committee can make a difference, and conscientious implementation of teachers’ professional ethics and codes of conduct.

 

Test of Hypotheses

Hypothesis 1: There is no significant difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on how students’ acts of indiscipline could be curtailed by the application of the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.

 

Table 5: Summary of z-test analysis on the difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the ways students’ acts of indiscipline could be curtailed by the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.

Location of Principals N Mean St. D df z-calculated Critical value Decision
Urban 75 3.18 0.79  

248

 

-0.502

 

±1.960

Ho1 Accepted
Rural 175 3.23 0.51

 

Data on table 5 showed the summary of z-test analysis on the difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the ways students’ acts of indiscipline could be curtailed by the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria, and the result indicated that the z-calculated value of -0.502 is less than the critical value of ±1.960. Based on this, the null hypothesis is accepted meaning that, there is no significant difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the ways students’ acts of indiscipline could be curtailed by the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.

 

Hypothesis 2: There is no significant difference between the mean ratings of principals in rural and urban schools on the ways teachers’ acts of misconduct could be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.

 

Table 6: Summary of z-test analysis on the difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the ways teachers’ acts of misconduct could be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools

Location of Principals N Mean St. D df z-calculated Critical value Decision
Urban 75 2.85 0.83  

248

 

-0.286

 

±1.960

Ho2 Accepted
Rural 175 2.88 0.54

 

Data on table 6 showed the summary of z-test analysis on the difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the ways teachers’ acts of misconduct could be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria, and the result indicated that the z-calculated value of -0.286 is less than the critical value of ±1.960. Based on this, the null hypothesis is accepted meaning that, there is no significant difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the ways teachers’ acts of misconduct could be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.

 

Hypothesis 3: There is no significant difference between the mean ratings of principals in rural and urban schools on the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools.

 

Table 7: Summary of z-test analysis on the difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools.

Location of Principals N Mean St. D df z-calculated Critical value Decision
Urban 75 3.25 0.78  

248

 

-0.205

 

±1.960

Ho3 Accepted
Rural 175 3.27 0.51

 

Data on table 7 showed the summary of z-test analysis on the difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria, and the result indicated that the z-calculated value of -0.205 is less than the critical value of ±1.960. Based on this, the null hypothesis is accepted meaning that, there is no significant difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.

 

Hypothesis 4: There is no significant difference between the mean scores of male and female principals on the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for the effective administration of secondary schools.

 

Table 8: Summary of z-test analysis on the difference between the mean scores of male and female principals on the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for the effective administration of secondary schools

Gender of Principals N Mean St. D df z-calculated Critical value Decision
Female 74 3.31 0.77  

248

 

-0.819

 

±1.960

Ho4 Accepted
Male 176 3.39 0.50

Data on table 5 showed the summary of z-test analysis on the difference between the mean scores of male and female principals on the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for the effective administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria, and the result indicated that the z-calculated value of -0.819 is less than the critical value of ±1.960. Based on this, the null hypothesis is accepted meaning that, there is no significant difference between the mean scores of male and female principals on the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for the effective administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria.

 

Discussion of Findings

The findings of this study revealed that, students’ acts of indiscipline can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools through systematic application of corporal punishment in schools, stating the school rule clearly helps to reduce the level of students’ involvement in indisciplinary acts, the use of suspension when students go contrary to the school rules, principals’ exercising absolute control over the students, and principals and teachers showing good example in the school system. The test of hypothesis one showed that, there is no significant difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the ways students’ acts of indiscipline could be curtailed by the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. In line with the findings, Gladday (2012) stated that students’ acts of indiscipline can be curtailed by the legal doctrine of inloco parentis in the administration of secondary schools through the use of corporal punishment, suspension of any student that is not discipline, clearly stated school rules, appropriate control over students by principals, and continuous presence of teachers in the classroom. This is also in line with the findings of Nakpodia (2009) who listed many areas a school principal or teacher as conducting disciplinary matters as the rules and regulations, school attendance, use and misuse of uniform, personal appearance of the student, use and misuse of school property, student-student relationship, student-teacher relationship, class regulations and test/examination. In an effort to prevent and resolve students’ disciplinary problems and ensure efficient functioning of schools, there has to be reasonable disciplinary policies and procedures. In addition, various disciplinary approach such as corporal punishment, suspension and expulsion, exclusion and civil rights issues must be adopted to enhance the effectiveness of school administration.

Also, the findings of this study revealed that, teachers’ acts of misconduct that can be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability include: involvement of staff in unauthorized collection of money from students, staff involvement in assaulting a student or a fellow staff, staff involvement in the harassment of students sexually, involvement of staff in forgery/mutilation of school official documents, staff involvement in extortion from students, unauthorized absenteeism among staff, staff involvement in fight/quarrel within the school premises, and staff participation in examination malpractices/misconducts. The test of hypothesis two showed that, there is no significant difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the ways teachers’ acts of misconduct could be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. It is important to note that any of these acts is a breach of the contract between the state schools’ board and the teacher.  The principal as mandated by law is to make a report where there is breach on the contract by teachers. In Bartonshill Coal Co. v McG uir e, Lord Chelmsford LC said: ‘every act which is done by an employee in the course of his duty is regarded as done by his employer’s orders, and consequently, it is the same as if the employer perpetuated the act (Singh, 2006). The legal principle of vicarious liability applies to hold any person liable for the actions of another when engaged in some form of joint or collective activity. Variably, teachers’ act of misconduct result to students’ acts of indiscipline.  Inko-Tariah (2006) reveals that poor pay, irregular payment of monthly salary, poor conditions of work can affect a teachers’ attitude to work, where they may be absent from school without permission of very flimsy reason or no reason at all.

The findings of this study equally revealed that, the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria include: suing principal that is responsible for indisciplinary actions in school, if he violates the fundamental rights of the personnel in his school, if a teacher under his command violates the fundamental rights of students, principal’s  failure to enforce discipline in teachers and students faces the legal doctrine of vicarious liability, and principals are empowered to report cases of professional misconduct of staff to teachers’ disciplinary committee (TDC) otherwise sued for violation of fundamental human rights. The test of hypothesis three also showed that, there is no significant difference between the mean scores of urban and rural school principals on the legal implications of the principals’ role performance in the enforcement of students’ fundamental rights in the administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. The principal is the head of the school, which implies that he is the representative of Ministry of Education in the school; and he is responsible for the things that happen in the school environment.  As the head of the school, his main goal is to create a conducive environment for teaching, learning, research and administration so as to attain set goals of education.  To ensure this, he is to enforce education laws by maintaining discipline in the school. This agrees with Obemeata (1984) who stated that in role performance, school principal is to ensure that teachers are regular and punctual to school, ensure that they are dedicated to their duties and, ensure successful function of the school and performance of students.

The findings of this study finally revealed that, the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for the effective administration of secondary schools include: principals’ involvement in creating awareness on stipulations of TRCN on the acts of misconduct by teachers, enforcement of  education laws through the use of a good supervisory technique by principals, providing good welfare packages for the teachers by the government, full commitment by teachers’ disciplinary committee can make a difference, and conscientious implementation of teachers’ professional ethics and codes of conduct. The test of hypothesis four equally showed that, there is no significant difference between the mean scores of male and female principals on the legal measures of enhancing the enforcement of education laws for the effective administration of secondary schools in South East, Nigeria. This is in line with the findings of Ikati (2005) who found that, if school rules and regulation must be made available to students, they will adhere to such rules and regulations. Hence, to satisfy substantive due process, an action must be reasonably related to the school’s interest in protecting students or maintaining order in the school. Generally, secondary schools are required to adopt policies/measures that are reasonably designed to address whatever problem they face.

 

Conclusion

The findings of this study have shown that, there are constitutional provisions on students and teachers’ rights and these rights must be protected in secondary schools to enhance smooth running and functions of the schools. Violation of these rights may lead to failure in school administration as well as troubles from students and parents. However, to promote the enforcement of education laws, principals must involve parents and teachers in decision-making for school development. This implies that principals must function effectively in school administration to enhance knowledge creativity, building and skill developments in the school system.

 

Recommendations

Based on the findings of this study, the following recommendations were made:

  1. Students’ acts of indiscipline should be curtailed by the principals through the legal doctrine of in loco parentis in the administration of secondary schools. This can be achieved through the use of corporal punishment, suspension of any student that is not discipline and clearly stated school rules.
  2. Teachers’ acts of misconduct should be curtailed by the enforcement of the legal doctrine of vicarious liability in the school system for effective administrative performance in the schools.
  3. Principals should be mandated by law to enforce discipline in teachers and students who go contrary to the listed education laws.
  4. Principal should report cases of any professional misconduct of staff to teachers’ disciplinary committee (TDC) for proper treatment.
  5. Administrators should therefore promote the respect of education laws for smooth schools administration. An understanding of these laws and their proper application in schools administration would promote smooth running of schools.

 

References

Agabi, O.G. & UKala, C.C. (2005).  The school, the society and the law. In O.G. Agabi, A.K.  Orubite, J. Ezekiel-Hart, & D.E. Egbezor (Eds.). School and society.  Port Harcourt: Davidstones Publishers.

Asuru, V.A. (2007). TRCN and enforcement of professional ethics among teachers: Matters arisng. Lecture delivered at the installation of members of teachers’ investigation panel (TIP) and stakeholders’ forum. November 29.

Bartonshill Coal Co v McGuire (1858) 3 Macq 300. In L. A. Buckley (1997). Vicarious liability and employment discrimination. Industrial Law Journal, 26, 158-166.

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Igwe, L. E. B. (2003). Elements of education Law. Port Harcourt: Pam Unique Publishers.

Ikati, L. (2005). Principals’ tort of negligence and the legal implication of effective administration of secondary schools in Bayelsa State.  M.A.  Thesis. Department of Educational Management.  University of Port Harcourt.

Imaguezor, M. V. (1997). Analysis of Cases of Violation of Students Rights in Secondary Schools in Edo State. M.Ed Thesis, University of Benin, Nigeria.

Inko-Tariah, B. (2006). The law and children’s education. Port Harcourt: Education Associates

John, B. & Earl, M. (2003). Key issues in secondary education: Introductory readings. New York: Continuum.

Nakpodia, E. D. (2011). Analysis of cases of violation of students’ rights in Delta State secondary schools, Nigeria. Prime Research on Education (PRE), 1(3), 050-059.

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Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria. (2007). Basic facts about the teachers disciplinary committee and teachers investigating panel. Retrieved from https:// www.trcn.gov.ng/file/TDC%20&%20TIP.pdf


Volume 15, No.2 Article 3

EFFECTS OF PROJECT-BASED LEARNING AND GUIDED INQUIRY ON TEACHING AND SUSTAINABILITY OF STUDENTS’ INTEREST IN LITERATURE

 

Uchechukwu Chima & Esther, N. Oluikpe

Department of Arts Education, Faculty of Education,

University of Nigeria Nsukka

 

Abstract

This study investigated the effects of project-based learning and guided inquiry towards teaching and sustainability of students’ interest in literature in Ebonyi North Education Zone of Ebonyi state. Two research questions and two hypotheses guided the study. The study adopted the quasi-experimental research design. The population of the study was all the Senior Secondary Two (SSII) students that were offering literature in public co-educational Secondary Schools in Ebonyi North Education Zone of Ebonyi State, with an estimated number of 3048 students. A sample of 110 students from two schools that were randomly selected from the public co-educational Secondary Schools in Ebonyi north education Zone of Ebonyi State participated in the study. The instrument for data collection was Literature-in-English Interest Inventory (LIEII). The instrument was validated by four experts, the four experts comprised two experts from Science Education Department (Measurement and Evaluation), and two experts from Arts Education Department (Education/English) from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The reliability of the instrument was ascertained through the trial-testing of 25 SS2 students in Model Secondary School Nsukka. The reason for the trial testing of the instrument was to determine the internal consistencies of the instrument. Cronbach Alpha was used to calculate the reliability index coefficient of the LIEII. The overall reliability index coefficient of LIEII (25 items) was .894. Mean scores and Standard Deviation were used to answer the research questions while the Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. The result of the study revealed that students taught with project-based learning method Performed well than the students taught with Guided inquiry. By implication, if Literature teachers adopt PBL and practice it in their various schools, students’ interest in Literature-in-English will be sustained. It was, therefore, recommended among others that government and other professional bodies should organise workshops, seminars and conferences to educate and sensitize the Literature teachers on the use of PBL in teaching Literature-in-English in other to achieve sustainability of interest among students.

 

Key Terms: project-based learning, Guided inquiry, interest, gender, and literature-in-English.

Introduction

Sustainability of interest in any sphere of life activities is very vital for the development of any institution and the nation at large. The use of innovative methods in teaching goes a long way to enhance the sustainability of students’ interest in whatever that is taught in the classroom. This means that a literature teacher can sustain the students’ interest in participating actively in reading literary works, through the use of innovative methods. Therefore, this study is focused on comparing two innovative methods (Project-Based Learning and Guided Inquiry), in order to determine which is more effective in sustaining the interest of students in reading literature works.

Literature is a work of art that stems up from the artistic prowess of writers and it helps to foster socialization and education of other individuals, through exposure to fictional situations. According to Saruq (2007) literature is a piece of writing with dual roles which are entertainments and education. These significant roles are derived from the stories it relates. Generally, literature is taken to mean letters that are written down (Okolo, 2003). Okolo (2003) further explained that literature is a work of arts created with words either orally or written, whose values lie in an impressive nature and ability to arouse admiration. Through literature, learners’ senses of involvement are developed as the affective domain which expresses the feelings and emotions of the learners is strengthened. Also Literature develops the cognitive domain of the individual as it develops the capacities for discrimination, judgment and decision. Furthermore literature also helps in language development as it is a tool for understanding language. In literature, language is easily learned in real situations or in endless series of situations where it is heard or is in use. (Svasubramaniam, 2006).

In teaching Literature in Nigerian Secondary Schools, Literature is taught as poetry, drama and prose. All of these are works of imagination or works that give the individual the capacity for invention (Fakeye, 2012). Furthermore, Fakeye, (2012) affirmed that in whatever genre (poetry, prose or drama) that a literature author chooses to pass his/her message, the center point is that of teaching a moral lesson and entertaining an audience. The study will be focusing mainly on the interest of students in non-African prose in the senior secondary school. The non-African prose is a type of prose work that is written by a foreign writer who is not an African. The characteristics of such prose works is that the settings, characters, plot, and language used in such prose are not like the ones used in the African prose works. According to Duru (2014) the study of Literature in English in Nigerian schools has many practical aspects:  It provides ample opportunities for learners to develop their creativity, sharpen their critical and analytical skills, and enhance their language proficiency; it broadens their awareness of the culture of different places where English is used, and enhances their appreciation and understanding of a culturally diverse society. And the intellectual, aesthetic and emotional qualities, which Literature in English helps learners develop and  prepare them for further study or work, particularly in areas such as publications and the media, where creativity, critical thinking and intercultural understanding are highly valued. Therefore in Nigerian secondary schools the students are all expected to read the prescribed text recommended by the exam board such as WAEC, NECO, and JAMB.

In spite of the benefits mentioned above students are noted for not having interest in the non-African prose works, this may be due to the fact that students are more conversant with the settings, names of characters, and the diction used in African prose works, than the non-African prose works which has settings that the students are not used to. Therefore students will always find it easier to answer questions adequately in African prose work than the non-African prose. To support this view, the WEAC Chief Examiner’s report (2012:42) on students’ performance in literature states that “the candidates were more at home with African texts but lacked the wherewithal to answer non-African texts adequately. In some cases the students misinterprets the questions because the prescribed texts were not read, which accounts for their poor performance, marked by little knowledge of the text, to the extent that names of main characters in non-African texts were wrongly spelt or not known at all.”  In elucidation,  Fakeye (2011) states that students are usually unable to understand the cultural background of the non-African prose works used since the cultural background is not their own.

It is appalling that the students’ interest towards reading approved non-African prose works wans by the day, thereby marring successful reading of the prose works. Hence interest in reading has a strong positive relationship with the success of students both in school and life. According to Anderson, Fielding and Wilson (1988) reading interest is one of the best predictor of a child’s growth in reading. This affects their interests towards reading the non-African prose works which bring about poor achievement in the Literature-in-English 2. Interest has great influence in reading. When one has no interest to read, no matter what the teacher or guardians do, reading will never take place to enhance learning. Hidi (2001) argues that interest is associated with automatic attention that facilitates learning. However, Schraw (2001) upholds that individual interest is a relatively long-lasting habit of re-engaging with particular objects and events. The interest similar to classroom learning helps to facilitate learning and consequently boost achievement. As interest undoubtedly has strong emotional components, this aspect plays a critical role on how reading interest influences reading achievement of prescribed non-African prose text in secondary schools.

Furthermore, the lack of interest among literature students is worsened by the method the teachers employ in teaching literature-in-English in the classroom. The method can be said to be a teacher-centered method because most teachers come into the class, write down the prescribed texts on the board and in subsequent classes, he/she just gives a summary note of the non-African prose works for the students to copy down in their notebooks. To support this view, Reeves (2004) observed that most students are not explicitly taught and so do not understand that, learning what the “text says” is not all there is to learning to read. Omojuwa (2005) noted that teacher’s competence is a key factor in the provision of effective reading instruction for students. This implies that teachers require a sound knowledge of the non-African prose that is to be read by the students and also need to have the right skills, abilities of how to package and present instruction in the best way to make students experience success in learning to read and have interest in the prescribed texts.

In addition, inasmuch as interest and the teaching method has a great influence in what students read, gender equally plays an important role in deciding the reading interest of students. Accordingly Russell (2012) sees gender as the different roles, right, and responsibilities of men, women and the relationship between them. As noted by Onah (2008), gender, although it originates in objective biological divergences, goes far beyond physiological and biological specifics of the two sexes in terms of the roles which they are expected to play. Gender differences, unlike the immutable characteristics of sex are universally conceded in historical and comparative social analysis to be variants that are transformed over time and from one culture to the next, as societies change and evolve. As stated by Adler, Killess and Adler (1992) gender difference are social constructs, inculcated on the basis of specific society’s particular perceptions of the physical differences and the assumed tastes, tendencies and capabilities of men and women.

The students’ interest in reading literature-in-English non-African prose works may differ because of gender differences. The male students may prefer reading simply and short stories that gives them a simply conclusion, while the female students may take their time to read the prose works to get more understanding and insight about the prose, thereby making them to do better than the male students in literature-in-English.

It is pertinent to note that all that is done in the classroom has various ways of aiding or hindering the students in their quest to effectively read the prescribed texts. In teaching literature-in-English (non-African prose), the teacher can adopt instructional methods that can bring about achievement and interest reading non-African prose works. These methods could be guided inquiry and project-based learning. Guided inquiry is a teaching method whereby the teacher acts a guide in the classroom while the students are allowed to make personal inquiries and find meaningful answers to questions posed by themselves or by the teachers. Inquiry-based learning (IBL) is a pedagogy which best enables students to experience the processes of knowledge creation and the key attributes are learning stimulated by inquiry (Spronken, 2007). According to   Kuhlthau, Maniotes, and Caspari (2007), guided inquiry creates an environment that motivates students to learn by providing opportunities for student to construct their own meaning and develop deep understanding. Through guided inquiry students gain ability to use tools and resources for learning in and beyond their information age, as they are learning the content of the curriculum and meeting subject area curriculum standards. When a literature-in-English teacher adopts this method in teaching, he/she involves the students in developing questions, making observations, doing research to find out what information is already recorded, outlining possible explanations, and creating predictions for future study of other prose works.

Project-based learning is a form of teaching that is centred on projects/task given to the students by the teacher, which fosters learners’ creativity. Thomas (2000) further explains that Project-based learning is a teaching approach that engages students in a sustained, collaborative task which is built around a quest or problem, and students participate in a variety of tasks that seeks to find meaningfully solution to the quest or problem. According to the BUCK Institute for Education (BIE) (2003), project-based learning is “a systematic teaching method that engages students in learning knowledge and skills through an extended inquiry process structured around complex, authentic questions and carefully designed products and tasks. For a successful implementation of project-based learning in a literature-in-English class, the teacher acts as a guide, advisor, or coordinator, following the general stages of project-based learning which include arousing the students’ interest towards reading the non-African prose works, designing the project activities, allowing the students to conduct the project activities and finally evaluating the end result of the project carried out by the students in the literature class. That is why David (2008) inferred that “Project learning can capture the students’ interest to apply their knowledge in a problem solving context.”

The study is influenced by the experiential learning theory by John Dewey. John Dewey (1938) provided the groundwork of learning theories that focus on “learning through experience” or “learning by doing”. Experiential learning is also referred to as learning through action, learning by doing, learning through experience, and learning through discovery and exploration, all which are clearly defined by these well-known maxims:

What I hear, I forget. What I hear, see and repeat, I remember.

What I hear, see and question, I understand.

What I hear, see, discuss and do, I turn into my skills.

What I teach to others, I own, perfect and master.

–              Confucius, 450BC

Tell me and I forget, teach me and I remember, involve me and I will learn.

–              Benjamin Franklin 1750

There is an intimate and necessary relation between the process of actual experience and education

–              John Dewey, 1938.

Students in experiential learning situations cooperate and learn from one another in a more semi-structured approach. Through GIM and PBL employed in class by a literature-in-English teacher to teach non-African prose, the students will acquire experiences which will develop and sustain their interest, communication skills, self-confidence and gain strengthen decision-making skills by responding to and solving real world problem and processes.

Studying non-African prose works in senior secondary schools confers many benefits on students, but evidence abound of the poor achievements of senior secondary school students in Literature-in-English paper 2 in public examinations conducted by WAEC and NECO. Students are noted to have poor knowledge of the prescribed texts and misinterpretation of the questions in literature-in-English paper 2, and one of the several factors that may have been found to account for this appalling state of affairs, is that the students’ interest in studying prescribed non-African prose is degrading. Interest, gender and also the teachers’ teaching method may have been attributed to be the most critical. Hence this informs the researchers to compare the GIM and PBL innovative method in teaching literature-in-English, this is to ascertain which method will be more effective in the sustainability of students’ interest in literature-in-English (prose).

The purpose of this study is to determine:

  • the effect of project-based learning and guided inquiry on students’ interest in non-African prose.
  • the influence of gender on the interest of students in non-African prose, when taught with PBL and GIM.

 

Research Questions

The following were the guiding questions for this study:

  • What is the effects of Project-Based Learning and Guided Inquiry on students’ interest in literature?
  • What is the influence of gender on the students’ interest in literature?

 

Hypotheses

The following hypotheses were tested at 0.05 level of significance:

Ho1: There is no significant difference in the interest of students when exposed to PBL and GIM in Literature.

Ho2: There is no significant difference between the mean interest scores of male and female students in Literature.

 

Method

This study adopted a non-equivalent control group quasi-experimental design. The researchers used two (2) groups of intact class as treatment groups respectively. The intact groups were pretested. Treatment was administered to the respective groups after which the groups are post tested. The use of this research design offers the benefit of comparison between groups because of the naturally occurring treatment groups. The use of this research design offers the benefit of comparison between groups because of the naturally occurring treatment groups.

                The study was carried out in Ebonyi North Education Zone of Ebonyi State. Ebonyi North Education Zone has seventy seven (77) public secondary schools (Statistic Unit: SEB Abakaliki Zone, 2014), but only 25 schools offer literature-in-English. The rationale for choosing the area is because of the poor performance of the students in literature-in-English in public examination such as SSCE, this may be due to the non-challant attention given to literature-in-English as a subject in the schools, and the students are noted for not doing well in their external examination.

                The population of the study included all the SS 2 students who were in session of 2015/2016 offering literature-in-English in public co-educational secondary schools in Ebonyi North Education Zone. They were three thousand and forty eight students in number according to the Statistics Unit: SEB Abakaliki Zone, 2015.

                A total number of one hundred and ten (110) students constituted the sample of the study. This sample size was drawn from a population of three thousand and forty eight (3048) students. There are 25 schools offering literature-in-English in Ebonyi North Education Zone, therefore Simple random sampling techniques was used to draw one local government from the four local governments that constitute the Education zone that participated in the study. Then purposive sampling technique was then used to draw two schools from the local government that was selected to participate in the study. Two intact SS2 classes from the schools chosen for the study were randomly assigned to treatment and control group respectively. The rationale for using simple random sampling was to ensure that all the schools in the education zone are included in the study, while purposive sampling technique was used to select the schools from Abakaliki LGA that participated in the study, thereby involving the male and female students in the sample and the facilities in the two schools were similar.

                The instruments for data collection for this study was Literature-in-English Interest Inventory. The LIEII was developed by the researchers. The literature in English interest inventory had twenty five items and it was used to determine the students’ level of interest in Literature in-English. The LIEII was measured using four points rating scale – strongly agreed (4 points), agree (3 point), disagreed (2 points), and strongly disagree (1 point).

The instruments were faced validated by four experts. The four experts comprised two experts from Science Education Department (Measurement and Evaluation), and two experts from Arts Education Department (Education/English). All the experts were from the University of Nigeria Nsukka. Their comments were on the clarity of items, simplicity of vocabulary, relevance of items to the study, total coverage for use in the collection of data for the study and orderliness, and their comments were used to modify the instrument appropriately.

The reliability of the instruments was ascertained through the trial-testing of 25 SS2 students in Model Secondary School Nsukka. This School was chosen because it is outside the area of the study, and SS 2 students were used because the same SS 2 students was used in the area study. Cronbach Alpha was used to estimate the internal consistency of 25s items which gave an index of .763, indicating that it is high and reliable. The result from the trial testing offered the researcher the opportunity to determine whether the LIEII are useable, valid, and reliable.

Mean scores and standard deviation was used to answer the research questions. The hypotheses were tested using Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) at 0.05 level of significance. This was done to establish the differences that exist in the variables (dependent and independent).

 

Results

Research Question One:

What is the effects of Project-Based Learning and Guided Inquiry on students’ interest in literature?

 

Table 1: Mean and Standard Deviation of Interest Scores of Student in Literature when taught with PBL and GIM

Method   Pre test Posttest
N SD SD   Mean gain
Project Based Learning 60 2.53 0.14 3.54 0.11 1.01
Guided Inquiry 50 2.31 0.26 3.28 0.12 0.97

 

The result of the study as presented in Table 1 shows that, for each of the groups, the post-test interest means scores were greater than the pre-test means with the group taught using project based learning having a higher mean gain. This is an indication that project based learning enhanced students’ interest in Literature than the guided inquiry method.

 

Research Question 2:

What is the influence of gender on the students’ interest in literature?

 

Table 2: Mean and Standard Deviation of the gender of Students’ Interest in Literature

Variable   Pretest Inst. Posttest Inst.
Gender N SD SD Mean gain
Male 56 2.43 0.24 3.54 0.12 1.11
Female 54 2.45 0.23 3.53 0.13 1.08

Results in Table 2 showed the pre-test and post-test mean and standard deviations of male and female students’ interest in Literature. Result showed that, for both male and female students, the post-test interest mean scores were greater than the pre-test interest mean scores with the male students having a higher mean gain. This result showed that gender may have some effects on students’ interest in Literature.

Hypotheses 1

Ho1: There is no significant difference in the interest of students when exposed to PBL and GIM in Literature.

 

Table 3:Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) of students’ Interest in Literature.

Source Type III Sum of Squares Df Mean Square F Sig.
Corrected Model .254a 4 .063 4.688 .002
Intercept 9.773 1 9.773 721.810 .000
PreInt .000 1 .000 .011 .917
Method .191 1 .191 14.14 .000
Gender .000 1 .000 .018 .893
Method * Gender .001 1 .001 .047 .830
Error 1.422 105 .014    
Total 1377.737 110      
Corrected Total 1.675 109      

                The result in Table 3 shows that with respect to the interest mean scores of students taught Literature with project based learning and those taught with guided inquiry method, an F-ratio of 14.14 was obtained with associated exact probability value of 0.00. Since the associated probability value of 0.00 is less than 0.05 set as bench mark, the null hypothesis (H01) which stated that there is no significant difference between the mean interest scores of students’ exposed to PBL and those exposed to GIM in Literature is rejected. Thus, inference drawn is that, there was a significant difference between the mean interest scores of students’ exposed to PBL and those exposed to GIM in Literature with the students taught using project based learning having a higher mean interest in the posttest. This result shows that project based learning approach resulted in an improvement of students’ interest in Literature than the guided inquiry method.

Hypotheses 2.

H02: There is no significant difference between the mean interest scores of male and female students in Literature.

The result of the study as presented in Table 3 shows that with respect to the interest mean scores of male and female students taught Literature, an F-ratio of 0.018 was obtained with associated probability value of 0.89. Since the associated probability value of 0.89 is greater than 0.05 set as bench mark, the null hypothesis (H02) which stated that there is no significant difference between the mean interest scores of male and female students in Literature is not rejected. Inference drawn is that, there was no significant difference between the mean interest scores of male and female students in Literature. Though there was an improvement in the interest of both male and female students towards Literature, gender did not show any significant effect on students’ interest.

 

Discussion of Results

Research question one intended to find out the mean interest scores of students taught Literature using PBL and GIM. The results as shown in table 1 indicates that for each of the groups, the post-test interest means scores were greater than the pre-test means with the group taught using project-based learning having a higher mean gain. This indicated that despite the fact that the both methods are innovative, PBL method of teaching had greater influence on the students’ interest than GIM. This implies that project-based learning method of teaching enhanced students, interest in reading non-African prose works. However the result of the study is in line with the research findings of Drake and Long (2009), Supara (2013) and Zehila (2014), which indicated that Project Based Learning could be used as a means to guide learners advance towards autonomous learning and autonomous learning can only be triggered through the interest of the students. Therefore the result from table one indicates that when students participate actively through the PBL teaching method, their interest is ignited by what they do and it helps them to remember vividly what they have learned in the classroom.

In addition, hypotheses one intended to find out if there was a significant difference in the interest of students in Literature, when exposed to PBL and GIM. The inference that was drawn from the analysis was that, there was a significant difference between the mean interest scores of students’ exposed to PBL and those exposed to GIM in non-African prose with the students taught using project based learning having a higher mean interest in the posttest. This result shows that project based learning approach resulted in an improvement of students’ interest in non-African prose than the guided inquiry method. Thus the null hypothesis one (H01) was rejected. The findings of this study is in line with the findings of Amao & Fakeye (2013), which indicates that participation of students in classroom activities increases the interest of the students in literature-in-English class activity. Therefore project-based learning that fosters active participation will always trigger the interest of the students in reading prescribed prose text in literature classes.

Research question two sought to find out the influence of gender on the students’ interest in literature. The analysis of the finding was presented in table 2 and the result pointed out that the post-test interest mean scores of the male and female students were greater than the pre-test interest mean scores , but the male students had a higher mean gain. This implies that male students had more interest in literature than the female students; this could be because the teaching methods that were employed in class were activity based method that challenged the male students to act than the female students. The result of the finding is in line with that of Bügel and Buunk (2006), which indicated that male students performed significantly better than females on the gender -neutral text. The findings from this study also contrasts with the previous researches such as Zurina (2013) which suggests that females are better readers than the males. This implies that despite the fact that other researches have noted that the female students have more interest to read text, the result of the present finding showed that male students can also have more interest in reading prescribed prose than the female students. This could be because male students may like challenging task that spurs them up in doing or acting, and project-based method is filled with task that ignited their interest towards being innovative and presenting a worthwhile projects in a literature class.

Furthermore, hypotheses two was posed to find out if there was a significant difference between the mean interest scores of male and female students in non-African prose. The result of the study was shown in table 3 and it indicated that since the associated probability value of 0.89 was greater than 0.05 which was set as bench mark, the null hypothesis (H02) which stated that there is no significant difference between the mean interest scores of male and female students in non-African prose was not rejected. The conclusion was that, there was no significant difference between the mean interest scores of male and female students in non-African prose. Though there was an improvement in the interest of both male and female students towards non-African prose, gender did not show any significant effect on students’ interest. A finding from this study is in line with the findings of Bügel and Buunk (2006), which indicated that the differences between the sexes in prior knowledge contribute to gender difference in reading interest. Therefore there is no significant difference between the interest of male and female students in non-African prose.

 

Conclusion

From the result of the findings the study concluded that for sustainability of interest of students to take place, the teachers should try as much as possible to use project-based learning method in teaching literature-in-English. For when the students’ interest is sustained through active participation, it promotes educational interest in the sense that students develops interest in reading literary works that will make them better persons.

 

Recommendations

                In view of the findings of the study and their implications, the following recommendations were made;

  • Literature teachers should make use of project-based learning method in teaching Senior Secondary School students. By doing so the level of performance of students in the subject will be enhanced.
  • Project-based learning method of teaching should also be used as an instrument of building up and sustaining students’ interest and love for literature.
  • The State and Federal Ministry of Education should organize conferences and workshops for Literature teachers to expose the teachers on the use of project-based method of teaching.

 

References

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Amao, T. A, & Fakeye, D. O., (2013). Classroom participation and study habit as predictors of achievement in literature-in-English. Cross-Cultural Communication Journal Canada,8 (9), 3-8.

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Buck Institute for Education (2003). Project Based Learning Handbook: A Guide to Standards-Focused Project Based Learning for Middle and High School Teachers. Retrieved fromhttp://www.bie.org/tools/handbook

Bügel, K., & Buunk, B. P. (2006). Sex differences in foreign language text comprehension: The role of interests and prior knowledge. The Modern Language Journal, 80(1), 15-31.

David, J. (2008). What research says about project-based learning? Educational Leadership, 65, 80-82.

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Zurina K. (2013). A study of students’ reading interests in a second language. International Education Studies journal, 6 (11), 160-170.


Volume 15, No.2 Article 2

EFFECT OF CONCEPT MAPPING INSTRUCTIONAL STRATEGY ON STUDENTS’ ACHIEVEMENT AND INTEREST IN SOME VALUE CONCEPTS IN UPPER BASIC EDUCATION SOCIAL STUDIES: IMPLICATION FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

 

Prof. Samuel Agozie Ezeudu, Monday Sampson & Ogochukwu Stella Okafor

Department of Social Science Education

University of Nigeria, Nsukka

 

Abstract

This study determined the effect of concept mapping instructional strategy on students’ achievement and interest in value concepts in Junior Secondary School Social Studies for sustainable development. The study was conducted in Umuahia Education Zone and adopted non equivalent quasi-experimental research design. Six research questions and six hypotheses guided the study. The population of the study was 3,606 JSS2 students offering Social Studies. The sample size of the study was 160 JSS2 students. Purposive sampling technique was used to select four intact classes. Concept mapping instructional strategy was used to teach experimental group while lecture method was used to teach the control group. Two instruments, social studies achievement test (SOSAT) and social studies interest inventory (SOSII), developed by the researchers were used for data collection. The instruments indicated positive correlation coefficient of 0.82 and 0.87 for SOSAT and SOSIS respectively. Mean was used to answer research questions while analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was used to test the null hypotheses at 0.05 level of significant. The findings of the study were that concept mapping instructional strategy has positive effect on students’ achievement and interest in value concept in Social Studies; that gender has no significant influence students’ achievement and interest when taught value concepts using concept mapping; that location has significant influence students’ achievement and interest when taught value concepts using concept mapping. The study recommends that teachers should adopt concept mapping strategy in teaching value concepts for sustainable development and that quality education should be provided in rural areas for sustainable development.

 

Key words: Social Studies, Concept mapping, Achievement, Interest, Gender and Location.

 

Introduction

The introduction of social studies education into the Nigeria education system was borne out of the obvious fact that the subject was considered very appropriate and relevant by the Federal Ministry of Education in helping the nation to achieve national unity and national consciousness. Nigeria as a multi-ethnic and multi-religious society needs effective means to properly and efficiently harness her abundant human and natural resources for holistic national development (Osakwe, 2010). One of the basic means of achieving the expected development lies with effective education of the populace to enable them acquire societal desirable values, attitudes, skills, knowledge.

In view of the above, the National Policy on Education (Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2004) identified education as an instrument “par excellence” for effective national development. To further demonstrate the nation’s interest in producing responsive and responsible citizens through social studies education, the Federal Ministry of Education pronounced social studies a core and compulsory subject at the junior secondary school level (Joof, 2002). The central aim of the above move was to ensure that every Nigerian child at the junior secondary education level will be able to learn desirable national values such as patriotic feelings, respect for constituted authorities, respect for other people’s culture and belief system, tolerant to other religious practices other than one’s own. Indeed, social studies by its nature and content is value laden. According to Mezieobi, Mezieobi, Ossai and Sampson (2012), social studies at all level of education in Nigeria emphasizes desirable national values while the subject tends to disabuse and disengage the mind and energy of the learner from anti-national development activities such as armed robbery, disobedience  to government, bribery and corruption, discrimination, favouritism and religious fanaticism.

Apart from the above, social studies tends to equip the learner with critical, analytical thinking skills and integrative problem solving knowledge that will enable them live functional life in their society. No doubt, this is a lofty objective expected of social studies to achieve for the society. However, it is important to note that the realization or achievement of the above goal depends on effective teaching of social studies curriculum contents. This is true because if the teachers failed to teach junior secondary social studies effectively perhaps by using information and communication technology equipments, Nigeria will only have to consider her hope of achieving national unity and progress through social studies as a mirage. There has been an increasing emphasis on effective teaching of social studies to enable it remain relevant to the contemporary education need of the society. The claim of some scholars such as Osakwe (2010) and Mezieobi (2012) that Social Studies has not achieved its major goal of proper value orientation among Nigerian citizens could be as a result of the instructional strategies used by the teachers of the subject which makes the concepts taught impracticable. The use of ineffective teaching strategies for social studies instructional delivery has been largely responsible for social incompetency and the non accomplishment of citizenship education expected of Nigerian youths especially through learning social studies (Yusuf, 2009).

The inability to achieve good citizenship that hold on to desirable values such as gratitude, gentlemanliness, honesty, helpfulness, concern for others, hygienic living, co-operation, positive initiative, respect to constituted authority among several others through social studies could be linked to teachers’ choice of teaching strategies. Teachers’ use of teaching strategies particularly those relating to the conventional methods such as lecture method, have been found to be inadequate for a value-laden subject like Social Studies. This is exemplified by increasing level of anti-social activities in the society such as kidnapping, vandalization of public properties, religious and ethnic conflicts, discrimination amongst others (Akpochafo, 2010). These anti-social activities mentioned above are expected to be minimal if the curriculum contents of social studies are adequately inculcated to the learners with the use of innovative strategies that allow the learner to participate actively in the classroom activities. This therefore calls for a change in teaching strategy. According to Nwosu (2007), the use of effective teaching strategy in the classroom is an important predictor of students’ academic achievement. Similarly, Arisa (2011) argued that teaching students with innovative teaching strategies, such as simulation, role playing, game, concept mapping among others, produces positive results.

Indeed, there are numerous innovative instructional strategies, as mentioned above, that can help students to understand social studies content. One of the instructional strategies is concept mapping which is considered, an important strategy by teachers and education stake holders. Concept mapping is a visual organizer that can enrich students’ understanding of a new concept (Birbili, 2007). Using a graphic organizer, students think about the concept in several ways. Concept mapping is a powerful instructional strategy, which allows for depiction of both the interrelationships among the elements of contents and relationship between new and prior knowledge. Concept mapping has positive effects on various teaching outcomes as well. Concept mapping is an active teaching strategy that encourages critical thinking, enable decision making and learners taking responsibility for their learning (Yearwood, 2005).

According to Merlot (2006), learners can only think critically about contents of subject matter to be learnt if they understand the basic terms and the relationship between associated concepts. Thus, concept map enables learners to actively construct a conceptual framework to which new ideas and knowledge are added, related, and refined thereby improving on their learning capability and strategy. Zollman and Robert (2008) affirmed that unless there is understanding of the contents of materials to be learnt in terms of the basic concepts, students are bound to commit unassimilated data into short-term memory and so no meaningful learning will occur. According to Zollman and Robert (2008), meaningful learning occurs when information is presented in a potentially meaningful way, and the learner is encouraged to anchor new ideas with the establishment of links between old and new materials. In particular, concept mapping offers a technique for revealing students’ cognitive structure, and involves the following systemic steps: identifying the major components of the concept, arranging the concept’s components in hierarchical order, linking the components with linking phrases, making cross links with directed lines.

The importance of teaching strategies as means of inculcating knowledge to students cannot be over emphasized. The 21st century Social Studies classroom is based upon a culture of inquiry and knowledge rather than information dissemination. Concept mapping makes it easy for students to understand, remember, and communicate complex information. Sometimes human (including students) brain feels as if it is scrambled because of information overload, overwhelm or ineffective use of the brain. This often leads to inability to solve problems effectively, lack of creative thought, lack of focus, difficulty giving great presentations, problems organizing one’s thoughts, poor communication, missing out tasks when planning projects, and forgetting important information. Thus, there is the need for teachers (especially social studies teachers) to use instructional strategies that give students the opportunity to participate actively and exercise their brain through critical thinking and analysis since such teaching strategy could enhance students’ achievement in social studies.

According to Nwagbo (2013) academic achievement could be getting high grades and a high grade point average (GPA) level. In the context of this study, academic achievement means learning outcome which has to do with the knowledge attained from teaching process, it is also known as achievement. Students’ achievements in social studies over the years have been poor (Ugorji, 2013). For example, the Junior Secondary School Certificate Examination (JSSCE) annual reports show that less than 50% of candidates passed social studies at credit level and above between 2010 and 2016 in Umuahia education zone.  Eze (2016) posited a reason for these poor achievements. The author noted that the teaching methods adopted by teachers do not make the learning of social studies easy for students. The teaching methods used by teachers in teaching junior secondary school social studies contribute to students’ poor achievements in social studies. The prevailing traditional teaching methods do not actively involve the learners in the learning process and seem to deprive the learners of taking charge of their learning, thus, affecting their performances in examinations. Effective instructional strategy is one which encourages students’ active participation in the teaching/learning process which could help the students to obtain higher achievement in social studies (Gatlin, 2013). This higher achievement could also increase their interest in social studies. Interest means attention to something (Adam, 2010). In this context, interest means attention to studying of social studies. Furthermore, Adeleye (2011) views interest as the curiosity to do something. In the context of this study interest means the curiosity to study relevant social studies materials and contents.

Some studies on students’ achievement and interest in school subjects have established that there are variances in students’ academic achievement and interest in terms of gender and location. On the other hand, some other studies found out that when exposed to the same instructional strategy, gender and location do not have significant varied on students’ academic achievement and interest on the various school subjects. Indeed, the issue of the influence of gender and location on students’ academic achievement has not been settled. Therefore, this study sought to find out the effect of concept mapping instructional strategy on students’ achievement and interest in social studies with focus on the interactive influence of gender and location on students’ achievement and interest in social studies.

 

Research Questions

The following research questions guided the study.

  • What is the difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method?
  • What is the difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method?
  • What is the influence of gender on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method?
  • What is the influence of gender on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method?
  • What is the influence of location on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method?
  • What is the influence of location on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method?

 

Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses were tested at 0.05 level of significance.

Ho1: There is no significant difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Ho2: There is no significant difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Ho3: There is no significant difference in the influence of gender on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Ho4: There is no significant difference in the influence of gender on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Ho5: There is no significant difference in the influence of location on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Ho6: There is no significant difference in the influence of location on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

 

Research Method

The study adopted quasi-experimental research design, precisely non equivalent group design. Quasi-experimental research design according to Ali (2006) is a research design that does not lay credence to rigorous experimental control. This study is quasi-experimental because intact classes were used hence selection of each subject (research sample) is not randomized. The study was carried out in Umuahia Education Zone, Abia State. The zone consists of four (4) Local Government Areas – Umuahia North, Umuahia South, Ikwuano and Umunneochi. The population of the study comprised all junior secondary two (JS2) students in Umuahia education zone of Abia State. The education zone has forty-one (41) junior secondary schools with a population of 3606 JS2 students (PPSMB Umuahia, 2015). The sample size for the study was 160 JS2 social studies students. Multi-stage sampling technique was used to draw the sample. At first, purposive sampling technique was used to select co-educational schools. Then, simple random sampling technique was used to select two schools each from urban and rural areas each. Finally, simple random sampling technique was used to select one intact class from each of the four selected schools.

Social studies achievement test (SOSAT) and social studies interest scale (SOSIS) were used for data collection from the respondents. The SOSAT was made up of 20 multiple choice question items with ABCD alternatives (options). The 20 SOSAT question items was compiled by the researchers. The SOSAT was used to evaluate the learning outcome (achievement) of the JS2 students both before and at the end of the instructional treatment (pretest and posttest). The 20 question items were selected by the researchers based on the contents in the JS2 social studies (i.e Drug abuse, drug trafficking, corruption and conflict). These topics were chosen because they are value laden and can be effectively taught using concept mapping. The SOSIS which was also developed by the researchers was divided into two sections A and B. Section A of the SOSIS contains information on the personal data of the respondents while section B of the SOSIS contains social studies interest items. Data were collected from the four intact classes using the SOSAT and SOSIS. The four intact classes were made to cover the same learning contents (drug abuse, drug trafficking, corruption and conflict). Four lesson plans were produced for the concept mapping instructional strategy (experimental group). On the other hand, four lesson plans on the same topics (drug abuse, drug trafficking, corruption and conflict) were produced for the lecture method group (control group). The treatment lasted for four weeks. The researchers made use of the permanent social studies teachers in the sampled schools. The reason for the choice of using the permanent teachers of social studies for the experiment was that if a new teacher other than the regular teachers comes in to teach the students using any instructional strategy, the students may think that something (experiment) is going on and that may affect their achievement and interest in social studies. The permanent teachers were properly trained using the concept mapping instructional strategy lesson plans (CMISLPs) and the lecture method lesson plans (LMLPs) during the training session. The essence of training the teachers was to ensure uniform instruction towards the validity of the experiment for easy generalization. However, before treatment, both group (experimental and control) were given pre-test. After the experiment for four weeks and the control group taught the same learning units for four weeks using the lecture method lesson plans, the post-test was administered on both the experimental and control groups of the intact classes. The scores of the experimental group in both pre-test and post-test was recorded and compared with the scores gotten by the control group in both pre-test and post-test. The research questions were answered using mean. Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was used to test the null hypotheses at 0.05 level of significant.

 

Results

Research Question One: What is the difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method?

 

Table 1: Showing the difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Group Pre-test Post-test Mean achievement gain
  X SD X SD  
Concept mapping (Treatment) 12.81 5.21 41.67 3.59 28.86
Lecture method (Control) 12.02 4.45 18.00 3.52 5.98

 

The result in table 1 shows that the pre-test achievement mean score of students taught social studies using concept mapping is 12.81. The standard deviation of pre-test of the students taught social studies using concept mapping is 5.21. The students taught social studies without concept mapping obtained a pre-test achievement mean score of 12.02 and a standard deviation of 4.45. The result further shows that the post-test achievement mean score of students taught social studies using concept mapping is 41.67 and their standard deviation is 3.59. The students taught social studies without concept mapping obtained achievement mean score of 18.00 and a standard deviation of 3.52. The result indicates that the mean achievement gain of students taught social studies using concept mapping is 2.86 while that of students taught social studies without concept mapping is 5.98

 

H01: There is no significant difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

 

Table 2: ANCOVA analysis of the significant difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Source of variation Sum of square df Mean square F cal F tab
Covariates -115.4 -115.4 -18.5504  
Explained

(R)

33.7021 2 16.85105 2.7088 2.021
Residual

(E)

267.4979 158 6.2209    
Total 301.2000 158 6.6933    

 

The result in table 2 shows that f-cal is 2.7088 while the f-tab is 2.021. Since the f-cal of 2.7088 is more than the f-tab value of 2.021, the null hypothesis one is therefore rejected. This indicates that there is significant difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

 

Research Question Two: What is the difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method?

 

 

 

 

 

Table 3: Showing the difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Group Pre-test Post-test Mean interest gain
  X SD X SD  
Concept mapping (Treatment) 13.39 4.91 33.06 3.44 19.67
Lecture method (Control) 13.63 5.11 20.63 3.34 7.00

 

The result in table 3 shows that the pre-test interest mean score of students taught social studies using concept mapping is 13.39 with a standard deviation of 4.91 while that of students taught social studies without concept mapping is 13.63 with a standard deviation of 5.11. The result further shows that the post-test interest mean score of students taught social studies using concept mapping is 33.06 with a standard deviation of 3.44 while that of students taught social studies without concept mapping is 20.63 with a standard deviation of 3.34. The result indicates that the mean interest gain of students taught social studies using concept mapping is 19.67 while that of students taught social studies without concept mapping is 7.00

 

H02: There is no significant difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

 

Table 4: ANCOVA analysis of significant difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Source of variation Sum of square df Mean square F cal F tab
Covariates -66 -66 -7.5812  
Explained (R) 24.4719 2 12.2360 2.7088 0.686
Residual (E) 191.5281 158 8.7058    
Total 216 158 9    

 

The result in table 4 shows that f-cal is 2.7088 while the f-tab is 0.686. Since the f-cal of 2.7088 is more than the f-tab value of 0.686, the null hypothesis one is therefore rejected. This indicates that there is significant difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.

Research Question Three: What is the influence of gender on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping?

 

Table 5: Showing the influence of gender on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

Gender Pre-test Post-test Mean achievement gain
  X SD X SD  
Male 15.81 5.47 23.54 4.04 7.73
Female 15.79 5.45 23.51 4.03 7.72

 

The result in table 5 shows that the pre-test achievement mean score of male students taught social studies using concept mapping is 15.81 with a standard deviation of 5.47 while that of female students taught social studies using concept mapping is 15.79 with a standard deviation of 5.45. The result further shows that the post-test achievements mean score of male students taught social studies using concept mapping is 23.54 with a standard deviation of 4.04 while that of female students taught social studies using concept mapping is 23.51 with a standard deviation of 4.03. The result indicates that the mean achievement gain of male students taught social studies using concept mapping is 7.73 while that of female students taught social studies using concept mapping is 7.72

 

H03: There is no significant difference in the influence of gender on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

 

Table 6: ANCOVA analysis of significant difference in the influence of gender on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

Source of variation Sum of square df Mean square F cal F tab
Covariates -111.2 -111.2 -12.2212  
Explained (R) 31.6180 2 15.4531 1.4413 1.972
Residual  (E) 281.4312 158 7.1351    
Total 313.0592 158 7.0411    

 

The result in table 6 shows that f-cal is 1.4413 while the f-tab is 1.972. Since the f-cal of 1.4413 is less than the f-tab value of 1.972, the null hypothesis one is therefore accepted. This indicates that gender has no significant difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

 

Research Question Four: What is the influence of gender on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping?

Table 7: Showing the influence of gender on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

Gender Pre-test Post-test Mean interest gain
  X SD X SD  
Male 14.81 4.33 22.97 3.11 8.16
Female 14.82 4.33 23.10 3.12 8.28

 

The result in table 7 shows that the pre-test interest mean score of male students taught social studies using concept mapping is 14.81 with a standard deviation of 4.33 while that of female students taught social studies using concept mapping is 14.82 with a standard deviation of 4.33. The result further shows that the post-test interest mean score of male students taught social studies using concept mapping is 22.97 with a standard deviation of 3.11 while that of female students taught social studies using concept mapping is 23.10 with a standard deviation of 3.12. The result indicates that the mean interest gain of male students taught social studies using concept mapping is 8.16 while that of female students taught social studies using concept mapping is 8.28

 

H04: There is no significant difference in the influence of gender on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

 

Table 8: ANCOVA analysis of significant difference in the influence of gender on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

Source of variation Sum of square df Mean square F cal F tab
Covariates -110.9 -110.9 -12.5504  
Explained (R) 32.7033 2 17.85105 1.1088 1.021
Residual (E) 271.4119 158 8.2209    
Total 304.1442 158 8.6933    

 

The result in table 8 shows that f-cal is 1.1088 while the f-tab is 1.021. Since the f-cal of 1.1088 is less than the f-tab value of 1.021, the null hypothesis one is therefore rejected. This indicates that gender has no significant difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

 

Research Question Five: What is the influence of location on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping?

 

 

Table 9: Showing the influence of location on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

Location Pre-test Post-test Mean achievement gain
  X SD X SD  
Urban 15.72 5.25 26.17 4.15 10.45
Rural 13.11 4.15 20.10 3.12 6.99

 

The result in table 9 shows that the pre-test mean achievement score of urban students taught social studies using concept mapping is 15.72 with a standard deviation of 5.25 while that of rural students taught social studies using concept mapping is 13.11 with a standard deviation of 4.15. The result further shows that the post-test mean achievement score of students taught social studies using concept mapping is 26.17 with a standard deviation of 4.15 while that of rural students taught social studies using concept mapping is 20.10 with a standard deviation of 3.12. The result indicates that the mean achievement gain of urban students taught social studies using concept mapping is 10.45 while that of rural students taught social studies using concept mapping is 6.99

 

H05: There is no significant difference in the influence of location on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

 

Table 10: ANCOVA analysis of significant difference in the influence of location on mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

Source of variation Sum of square df Mean square F cal F tab
Covariates -118.6 -118.6 -19.5504  
Explained (R) 43.1133 2 17.22311 2.9721 2.122
Residual (E) 284.2521 158 7.5512    
Total 301.3654 158 7.7623    

 

The result in table 10 shows that f-cal is 2.9721 while the f-tab is 2.122. Since the f-cal of 2.9721 is more than the f-tab value of 2.122, the null hypothesis one is therefore rejected. This indicates that location has significant difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

 

Research Question Six: What is the influence of location on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping?

 

 

Table 11: Showing the influence of location on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

Location  Pre-test Post-test Mean achievement gain
  X SD X SD  
Urban 13.67 4.22 26.55 5.23 12.88
Rural 11.22 3.23 19.12 3.41 7.90

 

The result in table 11 shows that the pre-test mean interest score of urban students taught social studies using concept mapping is 13.67 with a standard deviation of 4.22 while that of rural students taught social studies using concept mapping is 11.22 with a standard deviation of 3.23. The result further shows that the post-test mean interest score of urban students taught social studies using concept mapping is 26.55 with a standard deviation of 5.23 while that of rural students taught social studies using concept mapping is 19.12 with a standard deviation of 3.41. The result indicates that the mean interest gain of students taught social studies using concept mapping is 12.88 while that of rural students taught social studies using concept mapping is 7.90.

 

H06: There is no significant difference in the influence of location on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

 

Table 12: ANCOVA analysis of significant difference in the influence of location on mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

Source of variation Sum of square df Mean square F cal F tab
Covariates -112.2 -112.2 -15.4411  
Explained (R) 32.3266 2 14.71216 2.8411 2.121
Residual (E) 282.1234 158 5.2312    
Total 314.4500 158 6.1021    

 

The result in table 12 shows that f-cal is 2.8411 while the f-tab is 2.121. Since the f-cal of 2.8411 is more than the f-tab value of 2.121, the null hypothesis one is therefore rejected. This indicates that location has significant difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping.

 

Summary of the Findings

The following are the summary of the findings.

  • That there is a significant difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.
  • That there is a significant difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method.
  • That gender has no influence on mean achievement scores of students when taught social studies using concept mapping.
  • That gender has no influence on mean interest scores of students when taught social studies using concept mapping.
  • That location has influence on mean achievement scores of students when taught social studies using concept mapping.
  • That location has influence on mean interest scores of students when taught social studies using concept mapping.

 

Discussion of the Findings

The findings of the study are discussed in line with the research questions and hypotheses that guided the study. The finding of the study with respect to research question one shows that there is a significant difference in mean achievement scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method. This finding agrees with the earlier findings of Eke (2004) and Yearwood (2005) who found out that concept mapping instructional strategy has significant positive influence on students’ academic performance. Furthermore, Zollman & Robert (2008) as well as Abdullahi (2010) also found out in their respective studies that the use of innovative teaching strategy such as concept mapping enhances students’ academic achievement. The reason for enhancement of students’ academic performance as a result of the use of innovative instructional materials such as concept mapping could be as a result of the fact that concept mapping instructional method explains concepts better using mapping strategy such that the students easily understand the relationships between and among concepts. With respect to research question two, it shows that there is a significant difference in mean interest scores of students taught social studies using concept mapping and those taught social studies using conventional method. This finding supports the earlier finding of Oghene (2007) who found out that concept mapping instructional strategy help to sustain students’ academic interest. Ibuzu (2007) also found out that innovative teaching method such as concept mapping enhances students’ interest in learning. Furthermore, the present finding is in line with the findings of John (2007) who found out that concept mapping instructional strategy improve students’ interest in learning. This findings show that when students are given opportunity to participate actively in teaching and learning process, their interest in learning activities increases. The reason for the constant findings which shows that the use of concept mapping enhances students’ interest in learning including interest in social studies could be as a result of the fact that concept mapping instructional method explains concepts better using mapping strategy such that the students easily understand the relationships between and among concepts.

The finding of the study with respect to research question three shows that there is no significant difference in the influence of gender on mean achievement scores of students when taught social studies using concept mapping. This finding supports the earlier findings of Madu (2004) and Okebukola (2005) who found out that gender has no significant influence on students’ academic achievement when taught using innovative strategy like concept mapping. Ezeudu (2005) in a study also found out that being a male or female does not influence students’ academic achievement when taught using the same teaching method. However, the present finding contradicts with the earlier findings of Ezeugwu (2007) and Gilbert (2009) who found out that gender has significant influence on students’ academic achievement when taught using the same innovative teaching strategy.  With respect to research question four, it shows that there is no significant difference in the influence of gender on mean interest scores of students when taught social studies using concept mapping. This finding agrees with the earlier finding of Eze (2016) and Nwagbo (2013) who found out that gender has no significant influence on students’ interest in learning when taught using the same teaching method. However, the present finding contradicts the earlier findings of Ekwe (2013) who found out in study that gender has significant influence on students’ academic interest when taught using the same teaching method.

The finding of the study with respect to research question five shows that there is a significant difference in the influence of location on mean achievement scores of students when taught social studies using concept mapping. This finding supports the earlier findings of Adebisi (2008) and Chukwu (2009) who found out that location has significant influence on students’ academic achievement when taught using the same teaching method. However, the present finding contradicts the earlier findings of Onuwa (2004) and Kalu (2004) who found out in study that location has no significant influence on students’ academic achievement when taught using the same teaching method. The finding of the study with respect to research question six shows that there is a significant difference in the influence of location on mean interest scores of students when taught social studies using concept mapping. This finding is in line with the earlier findings of Chukwu (2009) and Adeji (2011) who found out that school location of students has significance influence on their interest in learning when taught using the same teaching method. However, the present finding contradicts the earlier findings of Onuwa (2004) and Nze (2006) who found out in a study that school location of students has no significant influence on students’ academic interest when taught using the same teaching method.

 

 

Implications of the findings for sustainable development

The Nigerian society has been eroded with negative values such as terrorism, kidnapping, armed robbering, vandalism, political thurggery among others. No doubt, there is adequate value concepts in Upper Basic Education curriculum that could be effectively used to train responsible and cultured individuals in Nigeria. However, constant ineffective use of teaching methods by teachers in teaching social studies has made it extremely difficult for social studies to achieve the objective of inculcating right values to the Nigerian citizens. Interestingly, the findings of this study have shown that the use of concept mapping instructional strategy could enhance students’ achievement and interest in value contents in social studies curriculum.  The study has found out that the use of concept mapping instructional strategy enhance students’ achievement and interest in value concepts of social studies. The implication is that for Nigeria to achieve sustainable development through social studies curriculum that designed to train responsive and responsible citizens, teachers have to use concept mapping instructional strategy in teaching social studies.

Furthermore, the study found out that school location has influence on students’ achievement and interest in value concepts of social studies. The implication of the finding is that a country that aims to achieve sustainable development cannot afford to have disparity in terms of quality teaching and learning in rural and urban schools. Thus, there is need for proper training of teachers and infrastructural provision both in rural and urban schools to enhance quality teaching and learning for sustainable development.

 

Recommendation of the Study

Based on the findings of the study, the following recommendations were made;

  • The study recommends that social studies teachers should adopt concept mapping strategy in teaching social studies curriculum concepts. This strategy will help to enhance students’ achievement and interest in value concepts of social studies.
  • The study also recommends that quality education in terms of infrastructure should be provided in rural areas as it is in urban areas.
  • Government should organize workshop for serving social studies teachers to enable them learn how to develop and use concept mapping in teaching social studies.

 

References

Abdullahi, A. (2010). Effect of concept mapping strategy on junior secondary school students’ interest and achievement in social studies. Unpublished MED Project Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.

Adam, G. (2010). Interest and mathematics achievement in problem solving approach. Retrieved on 3/8/09. http://:www.edu.intermap.org.

Adebisi, O. (2008). The effect of concept mapping instructional strategy on students’ achievement in HIV/AIDS contents of senior secondary school biology. Asian Journal of Health Studies, 12(2), 71-78.

Adeji, A. (2011). The influence of location on students’ achievement in HIV/AIDS contents of senior secondary school biology. International Journal of Education Research and Development, 8(2), 96-102.

Adeleye, O. (2011). Increasing situational interest in the classroom. Educational Psychological Review 13 (3), 211-224.

Akpochafo, W. (2010). Social studies for Tertiary students in Nigeria. Benin: New Age publishers.

Benton, T. (2000). Research variables: concepts and uses. Chester: McGrove Book Limited.

Birbili, M. (2007). Mapping Knowledge: Concept Maps in Early Childhood Education. Retrieved October 4, 2014.

Chukwu, O. (2009). The influence of location on students’ achievement in HIV/AIDS contents of junior secondary school social studies. Pacific Journal of Health Studies, 11(2), 212-218.

Ezeugwu, E. N. (2007) Effects of self Regulated and Lecture MODELS ON Students Achievement in Biology. Nigeria Journal of Functional Education 5(1) 82-91

Federal Republic of Nigeria (2004). National policy on Education. Lagos NERDC press.

Ibuzu, C. (2007). The effect of pictorial instructional materials on students’ achievement and interest in HIV/AID contents in Health and Physical Education. Benin Journal of Health and Disease Studies, 6(1), 98-104.

John, B. (2007). The effect of concept mapping instructional strategy on students’ achievement and interest in HIV/AID contents in Health and Physical Education. Benin Journal of Health and Disease Studies, 6(1), 68-74.

Kalu, I. (2004). The influence of location on students’ interest in HIV/AIDS contents in biology. European Journal of Health Studies, 17(2), 251-256.

Madu, C. D. (2004). Relationship between home environmental factors and secondary school student’s academic achievement in Geography. Ph.D. Thesis of the Department of Science Education, UNN.

Merlot, S. (2006). Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching. Journal of Online Learning and Teaching. 2 (3) 110 – 121

Mezieobi, D. I.; Mezieobi, S. A.; Ossai, J. N. & Sampson, M. (2013). Teaching values for stemming corruption in social studies classroom in Nigeria secondary schools. African Review of Arts, Social Sciences and Education, 2(1). 101-130.

Mezieobi, D.I. (2012). The Place of Social Studies Education in achieving Political Stability through Information Management Counselling. A Paper Presented at the 30th Annual Conference of Counselling Association (CASSON) held at Gidan Matasa, Minna.

Nze, B. (2006). The influence of location on students’ interest in HIV/AIDS contents of junior secondary school social studies curriculum. African Journal of Arts and Social Science, 5(1), 146-153.

Offorma, G. C. (2004). Gender and language. International journal of Arts Education. 4 (2) 38-49.

Oghene. J. (2007). The effect of project method instructional strategy on students’ achievement and interest in HIV/AID contents in biology. Benin Journal of Health and Disease Studies, 6(1), 56-62.

Oguniyi, A. O. (2008). Effect of gender and location on students achievement in Biology. Journal of Science Education. (8(2), 92-106.

Onuwa, E. (2004). The influence of location on students’ interest in HIV/AIDS contents in Health and Physical Education. European Journal of Health Studies, 17(2), 341-347.

Robert, C. S. (2007). Definition of gender. Retrieved from www.definition –of-gender-host-PSF-11026-online.com

Yearwood, D. N. (2005). Is Your Selection of Content Delivery Vehicles Closely Aligned With Your Pedagogical Goals? Essays in Education, 14, (Summer).

Yusuf, K.B. (2009). Effect of Concept Mapping Strategy on Secondary School Students’ Academic Achievement in Biology, Obafemi Owode Local Government, Ogun Masters’ Student Project.

Zollman, D., & Robert, G. (2008). Teaching and Learning Physics with Interactive Video. Lincoln, USA. University of Nebraska, Lincoln Press.


Volume 15, No.2 Article 1

MORAL LITERACY EDUCATION FOR SUSTAINABLE PEACE AND DEVELOPMENT: AN IMPERATIVE FOR YOUTH DEVELOPMENT IN

OGBA COMMUNITY

 

Prof. S. C. Nwizu and Franklin. N. Okeke

Department of Adult Education and Extra Mural Studies,

University of Nigeria, Nsukka

 

Abstract

The meaningful growth of any community largely depends on the quality of the youths that make up the community. Therefore, to ensure that any community enjoys sustainable peace and development, issues capable of triggering a downturn in the moral and educational progress of the youths are ingenuously handled. Hence this paper focused on Moral Literacy Education as a tool for sustainable peace and development in Ogba community of Rivers State. It also laid bare, some salient concepts relevant to the topic. The study also explicated the role of sustainable moral literacy programmes in the restoration of peace and development in Ogba Community. It advocated for total and immediate revival of moral literacy instructions in all the schools in the community. The study called on the local government authorities to revive the under-utilized Omoku Civic Centre; and recommended that the Federal Ministry of Education should see to the immediate review of our school curriculum so as to rekindle the dying embers of moral literacy in the country.

 

Keywords: Moral Literacy, Education, Sustainable Peace, Sustainable Development.

 

Introduction

The absence of strong moral literacy initiative in Nigerian schools today, remains an unfortunate omission from our national efforts to strengthen all-round education. This is because, among other things, educational institutions are created to serve as sources of truth and honesty (UNESCO, 2008). As observed by Brimble, and Stevenson, (2005), educational institutions are also places where students are shaped not only academically but also morally. Consequently, from the above revelations, one wonders why there has never been a serious step taken to tackle the glaring evidence of moral decay among the youths in the country. In our higher institutions, except for the occasional college ethics course offered, a well-organized moral training of any sort is absent. Although curriculum planners in the country have argued that by the introduction of civic and religious studies in the secondary school curriculum, the issue of moral instruction has been taken care of.  But in as much as there are some elements of moral lessons in the subjects earlier mentioned, the fact remains that the moral content remains worrisomely shallow.

In other words, the positive contribution of education to human development remains almost boundless, but often time, we fail to look at the issue of morality as one aspect every educational system should be able to sustain and uphold. Isn’t it a bit of self-deception to think or presume that education lacking in organized and rich curriculum of morals/ethics would bequeath our youths with the ability to make right ethical choices when the question of propriety and impropriety of human act poses itself?

To stress the importance of moral literacy in our bid to educate our populace; and as something that requires conscious cultivation, Nancy (2007, p. 365), argues that “skills and knowledge specific to making ethical choices in life are learned capabilities requiring skills in which individuals can be more competent”. She further argues that “in as much as some would say that the values parents share with their children from a tender age is always enough to put them through when making ethical decisions, “moral literacy should go further to reflect and emphasize the development of these abilities and should also seek to continuously get enriched through education”. To support the above assertion by Nancy, Zdenek & Schochor, (2007) posit that moral literacy is not a naturally-gained process, but is gained with the effort to develop the right ethical skills.

Albeit, moral literacy education on its own, even in full operation, is not and cannot be an absolute guaranty of human safety (peace) all over the world. This, as Nancy (2007) observed, could be as a result of the fact that more people are forming their own moral standard as the day progresses regardless of what they have been taught by their parents. Hence, as the society is increasingly fraught with this situation, more conflicting moral standards and contrived moral compass are formed in the process and the rightness or wrongness of our actions becomes a thing subjected to personal choices in which people choose what level of moral standard to observe. Again, culture could cause notable disparities in what constitute moral standards all over the world but that does not write-off some definitive standards mutually inclusive in all cultures such as truthfulness, respect for human life, equity, fairness etc.

Despite the ever-present negative bearing the omission of moral education from our school curriculum has caused in all nooks and crannies of Nigeria, this paper, judging from its title, has its major thrust on Ogba Community which is one of the towns that make up Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Local Government Area of Rivers State.

A summary of the narrative given on the history of Ogba Land holds thus:

The Ogba people, are indigenous Igbo-speaking people situated in the extreme south-west of modern Rivers State of Nigeria with an estimated population of 400,000 people. As a result of the discovery of oil in Ogba Community, it has undergone significant political, social, economic and environmental changes during the past several decades. However, despite its image as one of the main contributors to the wealth of Nigeria, there is a lot of poverty in many communities resulting from unemployment, under-employment, low wage jobs and deterioration of the natural resource base. (Francis 1995, p. 183-184).

 

In other words, from participatory observation, and information gathered from oral interview, this writer can state that Ogba Community has always been known to be peaceful people who rally round their businesses without bearing the burden of fear. The Ogba people share boundary with Egbema, Ahoada, and Ndoni, with no traces of full blown war between them. But this is no longer obtainable in the community as peace has been eroded with blithe disregard. In short, the community now thrives on providing a safe haven to varying cult groups and this has plunged the once peaceful community into unprecedented and unparalleled turmoil, with the possibility of death occurrence averaging two persons per week. This gory situation has become the reason why many people are leaving the community on daily basis. Establishments, both private and public are pulling out in numbers because no business can thrive in an atmosphere of unbridled violence and carnage. Similarly, unemployment is skyrocketing as a result of the gap the relocation of these businesses has brought about and people now live here every day in fear.

As a result of the condition of extreme cult-related activities among the youth which culminate to recurring cases of kidnapping, rape and killings, what obtains in Ogba Land is youth restiveness at its nth degree. There is, therefore, every reason to argue that morality has been debased into shrinks and that there is no premium placed on human lives any more in the community. This is also evidenced by the reports given by some of our national dailies – Nation Newspaper and Thisday newspaper – where they reported news of massive bloodletting by suspected cult groups on the 19thof February and on the 7th of March, 2016 respectively.

Therefore, judging from these gory activities playing through the ecological space called Ogba Community, one could argue that the ugly situation betrays near dearth of moral consciousness among the youth who are the core perpetrators of this carnage and should be tackled head on before it degenerates to a level beyond redemption.

Unarguably, the question of morality goes beyond killings and kidnapping to include other social ills such as corruption, stealing, forgery, nudity, etc., but this writer, however, was drawn to put up this paper mostly as a result of the high level of murder cases, kidnapping and rape orchestrated by cultists in the community, of which members are mainly the youths.

In the light of the above, therefore, this paper clarified concepts such as morality, moral literacy, education, sustainable peace, and sustainable development. The relationship between peace and development was also discussed.

 

Conceptual Clarifications

Morality:

Morality is “a system of rules that ideally should govern human behavior with respect to right and wrong, good and evil” (Elijah 2005, p.3-5). Drawing on the definition above, morality therefore is the core of nature of human acts such as: honesty, adultery, murder, fairness, forgery etc.

Morality has also been defined by Ohwovorione, (2013) as standards, principles of good behavior. Thus, moral values imply behavior, attitude exhibited and encouraged by members of the society for the fact that they are both good and desirable to mankind generally as against those behaviors condemned and discouraged. Examples of moral values include faithfulness, self-discipline, honesty, humility, brotherliness, patience, hardworking, truthfulness etc. The definitions given by the above mentioned researchers inform therefore, that morality as a concept concerns itself with the rightness or wrongness of human conducts. It is its knowledge that bequeaths man with the tendencies to engage his mind in ethical juxtapositions as to which thought to act upon and otherwise.

 

Moral Literacy:

Moral literacy involves “a complex set of skills and habits that can be cultivated and enriched through education. Like other forms of literacy, it is best developed in the home and the community as well as in the schools” (Nancy, 2007 p.365). Philosophically, Herman (2007), defined this concept as the capacity to react and read the main elements of the moral world. One can also say that moral literacy represents a set of practical knowledge that can be applied in situations that demand ethical choices. Of striking importance in the definition given by Nancy above is the acknowledgement of the fact that moral literacy involves a conscious cultivation process. That is to say that like other social skills necessary for the survival of man in his community, moral literacy can be taught and learned and as such, demands a conscious effort.

 

Education:

Oroka (2005), views education as “the intentional bringing about of a desirable state of mind; and relates to processes and activities that can contribute to or involves something that is worthwhile”. Implicit in the definitions of education above, is the fact that, the concept of education derives its true meaning and essence from a commingling of knowledge and moral. Remove one from the other and we are left with a handicapped reflection of what education represents. Education can also be seen as the process in which “the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and values of a group of people is transferred from one generation to the next through teaching, training, or research” (Anike, 2014). Drawing on the definitions of education above, one can rightly infer that education derives its essence from these basic ideas: the idea that knowledge must be gained; the idea that through this knowledge gained, attitudes are better shaped to reflect the acceptable mode of behavior of the society and the idea that the knowledge gained can translate to practical and demonstrable skills. But of greater relevance to us here from the basic ideas contained in the concept of education is the idea that attitude is better reformed through education. This therefore suggests that a well-planned educational system, regardless of the level must echo attitudinal reforms which, to a very large extent borders on morality.

 

Sustainable Peace and Development: Concept and Relationship.

Literally, peace and development are words with separate meanings but there hardly can be one without other. No wonder the report of the United Nations Secretary-General on the “Prevention of Armed Conflict” correctly stated that peace building and sustainable development are mutually reinforcing concepts (Galymzhan, 2001). That is why the absence of peace, most often, retards development.

Best, (2006), for example, defines “peace as the absence of war”. By stretch of logic, this definition means that war is the absence of peace. However, this definition of peace, despite its attractiveness leaves much to be desired as far as the definition of peace is concerned. This is because the absence of full blown war does not always guaranty peace.  In a bid to define peace, Leo, and Ray, (2012), opine that peace is “a state of well-being that is characterized by trust, compassion, and justice. In this state, we can be encouraged to explore as well as celebrate our diversity, and search for the good in each other without the concern for personal pain and sacrifice. It provides us a chance to look at ourselves and others as part of the human family, part of one world”. The underlining word in the above definition by Leo, and Ray, is justice. This goes to say therefore that one of the stimulants of the forces that characterize the absence of peace is injustice.

It is no longer uncommon knowledge within development circle that there cannot be sustainable development without peace and security, and without development and poverty eradication there will be no sustainable peace (Hans, 2001). In clearer terms, sustainable development as defined by Akintoye, & Opeyemi, (2014 p. 33-46), is “development that meets the needs of the present, without compromising future generations to meet their own needs”. The point being made above is that in a bid to achieve sustainable development, peace remains a formidable instrument without which every other effort at achieving developmental goals will prove pronouncedly unproductive. In a bid to highlight the relationship between peace and development, the president of Burkina Faso, Blaise Compaoré, on the occasion of United Nations Sixty-eighth General Assembly debate (2013), emphasized that peace is required for development programmes so as to provide real responses to the uncertainty stemming from the poor global economic situation. From the call of Blaise who is one of the leaders in the African continent, one can argue that there is a strong correlation between peace and success of developmental activities in communities. This therefore means that communities need peace not just to dispel the presence of violence or conflicts or for the sake of living an unscathed life but also to give room for sustainable development.

 

Moral Literacy Education as an Imperative for Achieving Sustainable Peace and Development for Youths in Ogba Community.

From the foregoing, it is quite pertinent to look at how moral literacy education can serve as a tool for solving the youth restiveness in Ogba Community of Rivers State. Sustainable development, as has been pointed out, remains a landmark which cannot be achieved without the enthronement of peace in any society. Previous studies like Galymzhan, (2001) and Hans, (2001), have pointed to the nexus between peace and development, hence Ogba community cannot join the train of progress if the factors jeopardizing the peace of the community is not determinedly arrested.

Ogba community, as was earlier mentioned has been unsettled as a result of different forms of violence which have taken an alarming dimension in the community and many suggestions have been put forward to nip the ugly situation in the bud. For instance, a report by pulse.ng, a reliable online news outfit on the 15th of February, 2017, contained a call made to the Federal Government by a group – ONELGA Renaissance, asking the security agencies to provide adequate security in Ogba community to halt the dark activities that have fettered the land. There have  also been political solutions put forward to put an end to the sad situation staring the inhabitants of the community in the face. Most important in the list of moves made by stakeholders of the community and Rivers State at large to end the sad situation is the visit made by the state governor, Nyesom Wike on the 23rd February, 2016. The governor on that day beckoned everyone involved to sheath their swords and embrace peace. In short, there is no exhausting the number of calls that have been made to solve the restiveness ripping the life out of Ogba community but from my study of the problem, “moral literacy education” solutions have never been proffered, hence my effort to look at how moral literacy education could be deployed to tackle this cankerworm.

For some morality experts, character education is motivated by a general perception that youth restiveness are on the rise and cultural values are in decline (Darcia 2002, p 156-171). Therefore, to avoid this gruesome decline, moral literacy education needs to be reawakened in our communities, especially, in communities most hit by moral decadence and youth restiveness just like Ogba community. Hence to achieve this, there is need for conscious effort towards learning/developing skills that are needed to checkmate our actions, especially when these actions deal with the propriety or impropriety of human acts. For instance, the urge to engage in cultism, kidnapping, rape, and all other acts of violence are products of our thoughts and as such, can be positively redirected when those thoughts are consciously subjected to ethical screening. This is where the conscious teaching of moral instruction in schools comes handy more especially, in Ogba community and other communities in ONELGA.

In other words, there is no denying the fact that there exists a connection between good morals, good values and peace. This by way of extension means that a morally conscious individual stands a better chance of making better ethical choices when the situation calls for it. Going by the above therefore, developing a moral literacy programme for the youths and adult members of Ogba community who, most likely, have lived their lives without any moral/ethical knowledge becomes an imperative. This will eventually go a long way in making them have a moral compass through which they can determine the rightness or wrongness of human act.

 

Recommendations

From the discussions made so far, these recommendations were made:

  • There is every need for the Federal Ministry of Education to see to the immediate review of our school curriculum. A review in this sense must ensure the introduction of moral/ethical instructions in our primary, secondary and tertiary education levels. This means that our educational system must be made to reflect and encourage our core values so as to produce a populace that will reflect the basic norms of the society.
  • Since it has been established that the main perpetrators of the peace-shattering activities in Ogba community are the youths, sincere efforts should be made to develop adult education programmes with moral literacy as the theme for different youth groups in the community. This could be done through mass moral literacy campaign. This effort will go a long way towards setting moral standards which were hitherto eroded.
  • Similar to the above point is that the local government authorities should revive the under-utilized Omoku Civic Centre; involve seasoned Adult Educators in the development of moral literacy and vocational programmes, invite artisans, those who have functional skills to offer so as the youths and adults will learn from them.
  • A data bank of unemployed and unemployable youths in the community should be kept to arrest unemployment in the community in particular and the local government in general. Also during the period of high unemployment of youth, moral literacy should be reinforced and sustained. This move will ensure that situations, like idleness, loneliness etc., which are capable of luring youths into anti-social activities like cultism, kidnapping, and gangsterism are not given a brooding ground.
  • At the secondary and primary school levels, teachers should be made to reinforce good morals when it is exhibited by their pupil by giving them local government sponsored incentives.

 

Conclusion

Achieving sustainable peace and development in a community where morality has been utterly debased with blithe abandon is not an easy one. Even if we mount the most sophisticated security machinery in such community, it will still not heal the rot and reverse the spate of decadence stemming from the community, especially when the youths of this community are indifferent to the norms and values of their society. This is because moral/ethical discretions cannot be imbibed at gun point but through conscious impartation of skills necessary for good ethical decision making. Consequently, to reverse the negative trend which lack of peace has caused in Ogba community, this paper suggested, among other things, that since the deployment of security operatives in the community has not yielded any significant result, Moral Literacy Education Programme should be launched to remedy the situation.

 

References

Akintoye, V. A. and Opeyemi O. A. (2014). Prospects for achieving sustainable

development through the millennium development goals in Nigeria. European Journal of Sustainable Development, 3 (1), 33-46.

Anike, A. I. (2014). Education for the emotionally challenged children: a tool for wealth generation in Nigeria. International Journal of Educational Research 13 (1), 301-312.

Brimble M, Stevenson-Clarke P. (2005). Perceptions of the prevalence and seriousness of academic dishonesty in Australian Universities. Australian EducationalResearcher,32 (3),19-44. Retrieved from www.aare.edu.au/aer/online/50030b.pdf.

Darcia N. (2002). Does reading moral stories build character? Educational Psychology Review, 14 (2), p. 156-171.

Elijah, O. J. (2005). The Substance of Ethics: Scholars Press (Nig.) Limited, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, p. 3-5.

Francis, J. E. (1995). Ali-Ogba: A History of Ogba People. Fourth Dimension Publishing Co. Enugu State, p. 183-184.

Galymzhan, K. (2001). Peace and sustainable development: A two way relationship. 8th session of the United Nation Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals, New York.

Hans, M. (2012). The European External Action Service: An opportunity to reconcile development and security policies or a new battleground for inter-institutional turf wars? Council Report on the Implementation of the European Security Strategy: Providing Security in a Changing World. Ghent, Belgium. p. 625-625.

Herman, B. (2007). Moral literacy. London: Harvard University Press.

http://pulse.ng/local/buhari-group-urges-fg-to-stop-killings-in-ogba-egbema-ndoni-lga-of-rivers-id6169875.html

Imhabekhai, C.I. (2009). Management of Community Development Programmes and Projects. Benin. UNIBEN.

Best S. G. (2006). Introduction to Peace and Conflict Studies in West Africa, Ibadan:

Spectrum Books, p. 3-8.

Kosemani, J.M. (2002). Introduction to Education, Ibadan: Sure Foundation Print.

Leo R. S. and Ray P. Jr. (2012). The nature of peace and its implications for
peace education. Retrieved from https://www.scribd.com/document/ 97334834/Sally.

Nancy T. (2007). Conceptualizing moral literacy. Journal of Educational

                Administration, 45 (4), 365-376.

Ohwovorione P. A. (2013). Moral education in Nigerian secondary schools: A realistic approach. Delta State Polytechnic, Ogwashi -Uku. Delta State.

Oroka, O. (2005). Deregulation of Education and Citizenship Right to Education in Nigeria. A Paper presented at the Philosophy of Education Association of Nigeria

(PEAN), University of Nigeria, Nsukka, 10th–13thOctober, 2005.

United Nations, (2013). Sixty-eighth General Assembly debate. Retrieved from

https://www.un.org/press/en/2013/ga11425.doc.htm

UNESCO. Safeguarding Intangible Heritage and Sustainable Cultural Tourism: Opportunities and Challenges. Bangkok: UNESCO; 2008.

www.thenationonlineng.net/onelga-killings-how-25-victims-were-murdered-beheaded-2/

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Zdenek, B., & Schochor, D. (2007). Developing moral literacy in the classroom. Journal of Educational Administration, 45 (4), 514-53.


Volume 15, No.1 Article 3

RE-POSITIONING ADULT LITERACY EDUCATION PROGRAMME FOR EFFECTIVE SERVICE DELIVERY OF RETIREMENT EDUCATION PROGRAMMES IN NIGERIA

                                                                                             

Prof. Stella C. Nwizu1 Dr. Christian N. Olori2 Christopher A. Ugwuoke3

  1. Department of Adult Education & Extra Mural Studies, Faculty of Education, University of Nigeria Nsukka, Enugu State

 

  1. Department of Adult Education & Extra Mural Studies, Faculty of Education, University of Nigeria Nsukka, Enugu State

E-mail: Christian.olori@unn.edu.ng

 

  1. Department of Adult Education & Extra Mural Studies, Faculty of Education, University of Nigeria Nsukka, Enugu State

 

Abstract                                                                                                                                        

Retirement education is an educative programme that equips retirees with awareness of self reliance. This paper therefore, attempts to rationalise the need for repositioning adult literacy education for effective service delivery of retirement education programmes in Nigeria. Conceptual clarification of adult education programme with special interest in literacy education programme was provided. An overview of retirement education programmes, its various forms, and challenges in Nigeria were further articulated. The paper concludes by advocating a review of the Universal Basic Education act to accommodate the effective integration of literacy education programme for effective service delivery of retirement education programmes.

 

Keywords: repositioning, adult education, service delivery, retirement education programmes

 

Introduction

Education in its broad sense is the entire process of socialisation by which men and women learn to adapt and conquer their environment. It is no doubt a veritable instrument for national development. This further explains why nations all over the world accorded priority to the education sector. Education is the process of developing the cognitive, affective and psychomotor faculties of individuals and groups in order to equip them with the knowledge and skills necessary to survive and make progress in the human society. According to Stan (2014), education is the act or process of imparting or acquiring general knowledge, developing the powers of reasoning and judgment, and generally of preparing oneself or others intellectually for mature life. It is therefore the wealth of knowledge acquired by an individual after studying particular subject matters or experiencing life lessons that provide an understanding of something(Terry,2011).

Admittedly, adult education affords a sizeable population of Nigerian adults who previously dropped out of the school system the opportunity of remedying their deficiencies. This opportunity is made also made available to children as well as youth who either left school prematurely or never attended formal school. This is further acknowledged by scholars who conceived adult education as a learning activity directed at empowering both youth and adult in the society with flexibility in the mode of delivery. Suffice it to say that adult education is an important area of Nigerian educational sector that focuses on the provision of functional education to youths and adults both in the formal school system and outside the formal school system in the country (Lucky, 2012). The universally acceptable definition of adult education as the entire body of organised educational processes, whatever the content, level and method, whether formal or otherwise, whether they prolong or replace initial education in schools, colleges and universities as well as in apprenticeship, whereby persons regarded as adult by the society to which they belong develop their abilities, enrich their knowledge improve their technical or professional qualifications or turn them in a new direction and bring about changes in their attitudes or behaviour in twofold perspective of full personal development and participation in balanced and independent social, economic and cultural development (United Nation Education Scientific and Cultural Organisation, 2006) suggest that adult education should not be considered as an entity in itself, but an integral part of, a global scheme for life-long education and learning. The issue of repositioning adult education programme for effective service delivery of retirement education programme is very important in addressing the prevailing poverty situation amongst the retirees of Nigeria.

Retirement education programmes aimed at helping retirees in understanding their problems and taking actions in solving them. It also helps retirees to become positive thinkers and content citizens. Thus, Hendum (2011) stated that through retirement education programmes, the orderly development of retirees in their union is ensured. It can prevent or stem any crisis in industrial relation, while raising their general standard of living. This education enhances retirees skills, knowledge, techniques for high productivity upon leaving the active service. As an economic tool, Imhabekhai (2008) submitted that retirement education programme provides retirees the opportunities to acquire new skills relevant to their day-to-day operations, and also to renew outdated and irrelevant skills. With these skills, the retirees become more proficient, efficient and effective in any post-retirement economic activities they found themselves. In addition, Salmon (2010) stated that retirement education programmes aims at producing an educated, informed, professional and self reliant group of retirees whose eyes are opened and always at alert to resist any form of oppression. Thus, if retirement education programmes can achieve these benefits, then there is no doubt that it could serve as a tool for empowering retirees.

 

Problem Statement

Retirement is a phase of an individual’s life which must be planned for and anticipated with a great sense of fulfillment. The security and welfare of retiring civil servants should be a top priority of the government. Retired civil servants deserve some post-retirement benefits like life insurance, medical plans, dental care, vision care, legal services and tuition credits. However, retired civil servants in most part of the country especially Nigeria are pestered by many post-retirement challenges. These challenges ranged from sudden loss of life, loss of the usual monthly salary, anxiety about a residential home, dwindling status, decrease strength and deteriorated health condition, physical disabilities to aging. The delay in payment of pensions and gratuities has brought untold hardship and death to many retirees, thereby making retirement dreaded to workers. This problem is further compounded by inadequate planning and management of post-retirement change of conditions with many people entering into retirement without any personal plans or pre-retirement counselling. Employers of labour on their part are naïve over this issue as they desist from enlightening employees on the need to plan for retirement. Thus, many employees enter into retirement unplanned. These problems necessitated the need for repositioning adult literacy education programme for effective service delivery of retirement education programmes in Enugu State, Nigeria.

 

Adult Education Programme

Adult education programme to a lay person refers to any form of learning undertaken by or provided for mature men and women outside the formal schooling system. The main targets are specifically defined as youth (girls and boys over 15 years of age, but sometime younger) as well as women and men, generally poor or socially disadvantaged. Although literacy continues to be at its heart, adult education also includes “numeracy”, problem-solving and life skills, and other knowledge (Romeo, 2011). The notion of adult education is often used interchangeably with other notions such as literacy, adult basic education, lifelong learning, continuing education, adult non formal education. Within the context of this paper, adult education is understood as the transmission process of general, technical or vocational knowledge, as well skills, values and attitudes, which takes place out of the formal education system with a view to remedying early education inadequacies of mature people or equipping them with the knowledge required for their self-fulfillment and active participation in the social, economic and political life of their societies. With various programmes associated with adult education, adult literacy education programme was conceived as an indispensable tool for the development of skills, knowledge and attitudes for the daily survival of human persons (Olori, 2015). This implies that the benefit of adult literacy education is not limited to training for employment, provision of education for people in employment, or workers education but to enable people become abreast with recent technological changes and research findings. This will ultimately enhance the efficiency, productivity and effective service delivery of such people in their various workplaces in the contemporary society. Thus, the Federal Republic of Nigeria (2014) outlined the goals of Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-formal education as follows to:

  1. provide functional literacy and continuing education for adults and youths who have never had the advantage of formal education or who did not complete their primary education.

 

  1. provide functional and remedial education for those young people who did not complete secondary education.

 

  • provide education for different categories of completers of the formal education system in order to improve their basic knowledge and skills.

 

  1. iv. provide in-service, on-the-job, vocational and professional training for different categories of workers and professionals in order to improve their skills and,

 

  1. to give the adult citizens of the country necessary aesthetic, cultural and civic education for public enlightenment.

 

Similarly, service delivery is a component of business/organisation that defines the interaction between providers and clients where the provider offers a service, whether that be information or a task, and the client either finds value or loses value as a result (Vena, 2007). Good service delivery provides clients with an increase in value. Service delivery can be found in many different institutions, professions and company structures, such as academic institutions, medical hospitals, IT companies and so on.

 

Retirement Education Programmes

Retirement education programmes are educational programmes, advocacy and edification offered to help employees make a smooth transition to retirement. These programmes provide retirees with the tools they need to sustain themselves. Thus, helping retirees to understand their problems and taking actions in solving them. In line with this, Elvis (2011) disclosed that through retirement education programmes, the orderly development of retirees in their union is ensured.

There are many forms of retirement education programmes practiced by people in different parts of the world. Marshal (2013) identified three of such programmes as family life education, entrepreneurship education and cooperative education. Marshal (2013) stated that family life education (FLE) is any effort to strengthen family life through education or support, and can include anything from teaching about relationships in schools to providing a parent’s day out. In addition, Oniye (2010) stated that family life education is a form of community education, both preventive and developmental in nature, intended to educate the public on the importance of family life and how it can be sustained. This education is basically concerned with inculcating the proper skills to individual on effective relationship and sustaining of such relationship at the family level.

Entrepreneurship education on the other hand, which is another form of retirement programme as indicated by Marshal is aimed at providing retirees with the knowledge, skills and motivation to encourage entrepreneurial success in a variety of settings. Variations of entrepreneurship education are offered at all levels of schooling from primary or secondary schools through graduate university programmes (European Union Commission, 2011). This education encourages creativity and innovativeness so as to achieve success in business pursuit.

Cooperative education is another form of retirement education. Lemony (2011) defined cooperative education (or co-operative education) as a structured method of combining classroom-based education with practical work experience. A cooperative education experience, commonly known as a “co-op”, provides academic credit for structured job experience. It is worthy of note to state that cooperative education is taking on new importance in helping young people to make the school-to-work transition, service learning, and experiential learning initiatives (Salmon, 2010). Cooperative education is also the use of active participation methods in which retirees learn how to work together to solve problems. This is normally founded on the principles of retirees’s rights, equality, equity and participation in decision-making (Lemony, 2011). Its methods include game playing, expressing opinions, democratic participation, sharing, ensuring equal opportunity to students to participate and, in conflict resolution.

 

Challenges of Retirement Education Programmes

 

Inadequate funds: The fund used in establishing and running retirement education programme seems to be grossly inadequate. Kanad (2013) rightly observed that lack of proper funding is the bane of retirement education programme.

 

Lack of sensitisation of retirement education: Many retirees do not likely have access to retirement education programme. Many interested retirees seem not to be aware of the existence of the retirement education programme centres and even the programmes they are supposed to enroll.

 

Inadequate personnel: There seems to be an inadequate number of instructors or personnel in the teaching of retirement education programme (Olori, 2015). There seems to be dearth of skilled manpower in the area of monitoring and evaluation in retirement education programme.

 

Poor record keeping:  There seems to be a problem of record keeping in retirement education programme. This may have seriously affected the database needed for adequate planning and implementation of retirement education programme.

 

Poor attitude of retirees to retirement education:  Retirees tend to exhibit poor attitude towards retirement education programme as most of them have not really embraced the programme.

 

Poor mobilisation: There seems to be no proper mobilisation of retirees to come and embrace retirees education programmes so as to achieve the desired results.

 

 

 

Repositioning Adult Education can for Effective Service Delivery of Retirement Education

Adult education can be repositioned for effective service delivery of retirement education programmes in Nigeria through restructuring of its programmes in the following ways: using language of environment, making it learner-centered, readily accessible, community-based, respect for cultural diversity, coordinated and integrated.

 

Language of Environment

                The use of language environment as a medium of instruction in adult literacy education programmes for teaching retirement education programmes will go a long way in carrying retirees along in any village, community or town where the programme is taking place. Language of environment (L.E) according to Afe (2002) refers to any indigenous language to Nigeria that is naturally learnt by members of a speech community and employed by them as their first medium of vocalised communication. In line with this, Araromi (2005) stated that language of environment simply means the language child’s family unit used at home as the language spoken around the child’s place of origin. Language of environment can also be seen as ones’ native language. Hence, the use of language of environment is a welcome development as retirees, whether literate or not can easily fit and benefit from the programme without any form of language barrier.

 

Learner- Centred

Learner-centred adult education programmes and services make the needs, interests, abilities, and goals of clientele participating in basic education a priority. The service providers recognise different learning styles and preferences and respond with relevant and appropriate assessment, instruction, and evaluation. The learners are partners in the planning and decision-making. Learner-centred adult education programmes also recognise and value learners’ prior knowledge and experience, and support their personal growth.

 

Readily Accessible

Adult education programmes and services should be broadly available for people that need retirement education programmes. They support lifelong learning and recognise that retirees enter and re-enter learning environments based on individual needs and goals. Adult education activities are most effective when supported by a diverse network of community and institutionally-based literacy providers. Dennis (2002) stated that this network provides flexible learning opportunities in support of a full range of learner needs. All programmes are encouraged to reflect, in an equitable way, a diverse society, inclusive of both genders and people with disabilities. Adult Education programmes have structures, approaches, methods and materials in place to make sure learners receive what they need in order to achieve results at the same level as other learners of similar ability and in other target groups.

 

Community-Based

In a bid to ensure an effective service delivery of retirement education programmes, adult education programmes should be responsive to the unique needs and conditions of each community and to individual and community development. Adult education programmes should also support community involvement and ownership in planning and delivery. Equally, the community has responsibility to support programmes and learners. Service providers value community members as experts and involve them as resource personnel. Service providers also recognise that community-based programme delivery increases access and individual success.

 

Respect for Cultural Diversity

Adult education programmes are to promote cultural diversity in the course of retirement education programmes. Service providers are to encourage staffing in programmes to reflect the cultural diversity of the communities. They should recognise the importance of cultural literacy to the survival, development, and empowerment of language communities. This will further recognise the right of any tribe or ethnic group to literacy education in the official languages.

 

Coordinated and Integrated

Meeting the needs of the many adult learners who lack formal education requires shared responsibility, resources and cooperation between agencies, employers, government and community organisations in order to deliver quality programmes (Thelma, 2009). Adult education programmes are bridging initiatives that promote readiness for further education and transferability between other adult basic education programmes. These programmes require partnerships among communities, organisations and institutions. The identification of needs as well as the development, delivery and evaluation of adult education programmes are shared responsibilities involving learners, government, post-secondary institutions, divisional education authorities, community-based organisations, aboriginal management boards, employers and employees.

 

Conclusion

Adult education is a practice in which adults engage in systematic and sustained learning activities beyond the traditional schooling in order to gain new forms of knowledge, skills, attitudes, or values. This education reflects on a specific philosophy about learning and teaching based on the assumption that adults can and want to learn. Ageing and retirement are irrevocable occurrences in the life of individual employees whether in the public or private sector. Retirement education programmes are educational activities directed at providing or updating new skills to retirees for effective and active participation in their day-to-day operations. These skills are acquired through repositioning adult education programmes.

 

Way Forward

                The following suggestions are made as way forward towards ensuring the repositioning of adult education programmes for effective service delivery of retirement education programmes:

  1. The Universal Basic Education act should be reviewed by providing a section on the place of adult education to further trigger the effective service delivery of retirement education programme in Nigeria.

 

  1. Establishing more adult education centres in the various states of the federation for easy access to everybody especially interesting adult.

 

  1. Providers of various programmes in adult education should be designed to be free and based on learners’ needs and aspirations.

 

  1. Upward review of Facilitators’ remuneration (allowance): payment of facilitators should be in accordance with the minimum benchmark as set by the Non-Formal Education blue print that facilitators should be paid minimum wage as their remuneration or allowances.

 

  1. Recruitment of adequate and qualified facilitators: persons with Nigeria Certificate in Education and specialisation in adult education should be employed as facilitators in the non-formal education centres.

 

 

  1. There should be intensified and sustained advocacy, sensitisation and mobilisation of all stakeholders involved in the promotion of adult education in Nigeria.

 

  1. Employment of adequate number of staff at all levels to meet the ever increasing demand of adult education in the country should be made by the government through the various state agencies of adult and non-formal education.

 

 

 

 

 

References

Afe, H. (2002). Towards satisfactory retirement: A socio-psychological approach. Lagos Nigeria: Kola Okanlawon Services Ltd.

Araromi, H. (2005). Language of environment and its influence on humanity. Ilorin: Femi Best Press.

Aruma, G. (2011). Fundamentals of adult learning in the new millennium. Cambo District: Zena Press.

Barry, N.H.(2004). Influence of education on mankind. Brisbane city: Goonock Press.

Dennis, J. T.(2002). The role of adult education in community development. Bastern: Locony Publishers.

Dewey, J.(2004). Democracy and education. London: The Free Press.

Elvis, G.U. (2011). Social security and retirement around the world. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

European Union Commission (2011). Entrepreneurship education in the New Millennium”, Entrepreneurship Education Experience, Columbia, MD: Retirement Education Association, pp. 1–5.

Federal Republic of Nigeria (2014). National policy on education. Lagos: NERDC Press

Hendum, E.E. (2011). Indigenous education: Addressing current issues and developments. Comparative education, 39 (2), 139–145.

Imhabekhai, C.I. (2008). Programme development and programme management in Adult and non-formal education in Nigeria. Apapa Lagos: Amfitop Books.

Kanab, H. L. (2013). The spaces between: toward a new paradigm for retirement education, Journal of retirement education, 32(2):36–45

Lemony, G.H. (2011). Community service scholarships: combining cooperative education with service learning. Journal of cooperative education, 33(1): 46–54.

Lucky, E. (2012). Adult education and human development. Nairobi: Mboke Press.

Marshal, G. (2013). Health problems as determinants of retirement: Are self-rated measures endogenous? Journal of health economics, 18( 2): 173–193

Olori, C.N. (2015). Basics of literacy education: Nigerian perspective. Port Harcourt: Harey Publications Coy.

Oniye, A. O.(2001), Problem associated with retirement and implications for Productive Adult Life . Nigerian Journal of Gender and Development, 5(2): 22-34.

Romeo, M. (2011). Education for the old and less privileged. Hachem: Damon Press.

Salmon, E.B. (2010). The cooperative education movement: Association of Cooperative Colleges. Journal of cooperative education, 8(5): 24–27

Stan, G. (2014). Concept of education. Olive Town: Remac Press.

Spencer, B. (2006). The purposes of adult education: a short introduction (2nd ed.).Toronto: Thompson Educational Publication.

Terry K. (2011). Education as wealth of knowledge for man. Atlanta: Cannon Press.

Thelma, F. C. (2009). Philosophical base of adult education: a new perspective. Leicester: Adams Press.

Vena, H.O. (2007). Promoting better service delivery in a business organisation. Texas: Thanack Press.

 UNESCO (2006). Recommendation on the development of adult education. New York City: UNESCO Press.


Volume 15, No.1 Article 2

TOWARDS EDUCATION FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: LESSONS FROM RE-ENGINEERING OF EDUCATION IN ANAMBRA STATE, NIGERIA

 

Prof. Kate Azuka Omenugha

 

Abstract

Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) has been widely explained over the decades. The argument has been that the survival of nations depends on functional education that will lead to sustainability in all ramifications; economic, political, technological, social, etc. Functional education is the key to achieving sustainable national development. Yet the Nigerian society is bewildered with challenges in the education system, making sustainable development a mirage. Hinged on the necessity for substantial change in the way we think about the role of education in global development and its catalytic impact on the well-being of individuals and the future of our nation, this article evaluates the effort of Anambra State government on the re-engineering of education, fashioned towards ensuring sustainable development in the state. The article submits that the functional education system in the state qualifies to be a fundamental template for ideal education for sustainable development properly called for in the nation and the world at large.

 

Keywords: Education for Sustainable Development, Education for Employment (E4E), Chief Willie Obiano, Value based education, Anambra State.

 

Introduction

Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) has become an important issue in society for the past three decades. The United Nations Decade for ESD[1] has emphasized innovative approaches in education fashioned to enable contributing to the societal transition towards sustainability through both the formal education system and non-formal and informal learning settings.[2] Sustainability is thus a paradigm for thinking about a future in which environmental, social and economic considerations are balanced in the pursuit of development and an improved quality of life. These three spheres – society, environment and economy – are intertwined. It is pertinent to ask; what is Education for Sustainable development and how has the education sector in Anambra state keyed into the vision of the United Nations Decade for ESD?

 

Understanding Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)

The definition of sustainable development that continues to enjoy wide currency was famously defined in the Brundtland Commission report, Our Common Future as ‘development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.’[3] It is generally depicted as a process of maintaining a dynamic balance between three interrelated ‘pillars,’ or ‘dimensions’, i.e. economy, environment and society as the development process is taken forward, with the aim of staying within the constraints imposed by the ‘carrying capacity’ of the planet.[4] Munasinghe (2004) aptly defines sustainable national development as a process of improving the range of opportunities that will enable individual humans and communities to achieve their aspirations and full potential over a sustained period of time while maintaining the resilience of economic, social and environmental systems.[5]

Age (2005) identified some objectives which sustainable national development is expected to realize: increase capital income and employment, promoting human welfare, satisfying basic needs; protecting the environment.[6]

Education for sustainable development (ESD) was declared to be an ‘enabler for sustainable development’ with the potential to ‘empower learners to transform themselves and the society they live in’ (UNESCO, 2014a). The Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development, designed to provide the roadmap for the post-2015 ESD agenda and launched at the conference, rehearses the core learning content, approaches and competencies of ESD: [7].

  1. It involves developing in the learner the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes enabling informed decision making and responsible action for environmental integrity, economic viability and the just society in the present and with an eye to the future;
  2. It entails the use of participatory learning and teaching methods that motivate and empower learners;
  3. It is fundamentally a rights-based approach;
  4. It relates to the environmental, social and economic pillars of sustainable development in an integrated, balanced and holistic way, comprehensively embracing, inter alia, poverty reduction, climate change, disaster risk reduction, biodiversity and sustainable consumption and production;
  5. It encompasses but does not seek to usurp historical and/or current ‘adjectival’ educations such as environmental education, global education and development education.[8]

 

However, it is important to note that meaning of education for sustainable development differs from country to country, region to region. It develops in ways that are locally relevant and it thrives on the five pillars that provide quality education and fosters human development namely; learning to know, learning to do, learning to live together, learning to be, learning to transform oneself and learning to transform society.

Education for sustainable development thrives on values and by so doing rest upon creating locally relevant and appropriate values. Values shape many things within the society (world views, how we treat others, how we view ourselves, our expectation of government, our use and abuse of natural resources, etc)

 

Country Meaning of ESD

Chile

In Chile, ESD is seen as a fundamental part of citizenship education, an opportunity to satisfy human needs through a pedagogy that fosters the cultural transformation towards a sustainable society and which permits education to re-think itself and to work in favour of the democratization of knowledge. It is seen as the collective construction of an ethic of human action which promotes the development of participatory and supportive educational communities.

 

Botswana

For Botswana, ESD is education that places emphasis on equipping learners and the public with skills that will sustain them in future. It involves the acquisition of knowledge, skills, right attitudes and values in such a way that learners will be able to use their environment productively and in a sustainable manner so as to improve the quality of their life and to become productive members of their society.

China

In accordance with common scientific understandings, ESD in China is viewed as a kind of education that develops values that support sustainable development, with the intention to help people learn relevant knowledge and values and to develop the right and healthy habits and lifestyle which will lead to sustainable development for the whole society (adapted from Asia-Pacific regional report).

 

Arab Region

In the Arab region, ESD contributes to “the acquisition and practice of knowledge, values and skills that ensure balance between the economic, social and environmental aspects of development and the observance of both individuals and society development and progress in life”.[9]

 

What is Education for Sustainable Development in Nigerian Context?

No doubt education constitutes the major instrument for sustainable human development and fulcrum around which every other activity revolves.[10] Nation which has recorded tremendous feats in the world heavily relied on the instrumentality of education.

However, in Nigeria there seems to be a daily decline of educational standards.[11] Although according to the former president Olusegun Obasanjo in his Presidential Speech on April, 24, 2000 in Dakar Senegal, he attributed the educational falling standard to bad governance. In his speech; he stated that: Nigerian educational system as it stands is a living proof of the damages that bad governance can do to our society and social structure.[12] While this is arguably true, many scholars such as Tahir (2001), Boyi (2013), Age (2005)  also think that failing education standard in Nigeria is as a result of dysfunctional type of education. Nigeria’s emphasis on certificate rather than empowerment continues to hype unemployment. Below are the challenges of education in Nigeria.

 

Education in Nigeria: What are the issues?

  1. Challenged /dysfunctional education system
  2. Craze for non-existent White collar jobs
  3. Disdain for people who “use their hands”
  4. Decline in creativity and enterprise
  5. Low self confidence and self esteem
  6. Acute shortage of infrastructure and facilities
  7. Access to basic education hindered by gender issues and socio-cultural beliefs and practices
  8. Theory at the expense of technical/vocational and entrepreneurship
  9. Ethical issues – examination malpractices, etc
  10. Unqualified teaching force

 

Transforming Education for Sustainability in Nigeria

In order to ensure a reasonable transformation of education for sustainable development in Nigeria, there is need to ensure the following;

  1. The desire to attain education for all (EFA)
  2. The sustainable development goals (SDGs); the goal number 4 on quality education is very instructive.
  3. Value re-orientation
  4. Poverty eradication
  5. Wealth generation and job creation, and
  6. Empowering people through education

 

How has Anambra State worked so far towards transforming education through the ESD?

When Chief Dr. Willie Obiano took over as the Executive Governor of Anambra State, he developed a vision for the state expressed through the Anambra Wheel of Development. This vision is anchored by the 4 pillars namely: Agriculture, Oil and Gas, Trade and Commerce and Industrialization.

To support this vision is the education which the Governor has (together with others such as healthcare) termed an “Enabler”- An enabler is an energizer, a propeller, an activator where the strength of the enabler, determines the strength of the pillars. Thus a strong education is needed to make the four pillars solid.

Education is the key to achieving the vision of the Dr. Willie Obiano’s administration which seeks to make Anambra State the first choice investment destination and most preferred location to site new industries. The State Ministry of Education (SMoE) has developed the Broad Strategic Objectives to support this vision focusing on producing human resource capital to sustain the 4 pillars.

 

Pillar 1: Agriculture:

The education system seeks to inculcate vocational skills in our students through vocational education whereby agriculture is seen as big business, creating employment and feeding the nation.

Pillar 2: Oil and Gas:

The aim of education here is to deepen and broaden the participation of private sector partnership in education in order to sustain the integration of knowledge development into industry and other segments of the market and support Government financing needs.

 

Pillar 3: Industrialization:

Here, education is channeled to ensure efficient management in terms of a comprehensive, well diversified and sustainable resource system of infrastructure, supportive of Government and private sector needs.

 

Pillar 4: Commerce and Industry:

Continuity in the enhancement of technical skills of our students in technical colleges benchmarking of international standards, linking with private sectors, professional bodies and international institution for improved professional workforce and self-employment. Anambra state becomes poised to be a major destination for out-sourced education systems management skills and services.

These strategic objectives are driven by His Excellency’s blueprint on education. Gov. Obiano has declared in his blueprint, the following Strategic objective:

The government will ensure that the learning needs of all are met through equitable access to appropriate learning and life-skills programmes and be one of the top 3 states with lowest illiteracy rate in Nigeria.[13]

 

To achieve this, education in the state thus comes in full package, approached from three-pronged areas – Infrastructure, pupils/students development, and teacher improvement. And these are summed up in the Anambra state story of re-engineering education.

 

Anambra State Story of Re-engineering Education

The Anambra state story of re-engineering education comes in the following categories;

  1. Curriculum – Education for Employment (E4E)
  2. Revamping technical colleges
  3. Private sector engagement
  4. Teachers’ development
  5. Policies
  6. Value based education
  7. ICT drives
  8. Girl child education

 

Curriculum – Education for Employment (E4E)

Nigeria realizes the need for trade subjects and has thus in 2012 restructured curriculum to encompass many trade/entrepreneurship subjects. Anambra State is among the first states to drive the entrepreneurship subjects. What is currently running in the state is what is called Education for Employment (E4E). This is the type of education whereby a bridge is created between the schools and the industries and private sectors. Students are made to have hands-on experiences from the local industries and artisans. This is a functional education where students develop various skills that will enhance their employability. A situation where students are given education that makes them employers rather than the employees of labour is to be coveted.

The Immigration Service recruitment saga of 2014 is still fresh in our minds where mayhem was let loose as millions of applicants applied for the advertised 4000 job slots, leading to huge loss of lives.

Figure 2

Figure 2


Revamping Technical Colleges

It is in Technical and Vocational Education (TVET) that the Willie Obiano administration is making its mark in the footprints of time. At inception, the 11 technical colleges in the state were at their lowest ebb where none had accreditation. Our Technical and Vocational Colleges now offer a great opportunity to produce fit-for-purpose, indigenous human resources that will enable our focus on Agriculture, Oil & Gas, Trade & Commerce and Industrialization (The 4 Pillars) to yield the desired outcomes that will improve the quality of life of the local populace.

 

  1. Free tuition for students in NTC 1 – 3 to tackle the low intake of students at NTC 1 and high attrition rate in the final year (NTC 3).
  2. Bridge programme to tackle the disconnection between the Colleges and the local Industries.
  • Teachers Industrial work experience scheme (TIWES) is now readily in place. Teachers of technical colleges are being retrained to produce the best of students. In 2014, twenty-three (23) of such teachers were taken on study tour to Singapore to learn the Singaporean model of technical and vocational education.

 

The production units of the technical colleges have been resuscitated as students now produce items that are marketable. Anambra State held the first ever Trade/Entrepreneurship fair for secondary schools where students display their skills and products in cosmetology, fisheries, snail rearing, etc.

The result of all these is the increase in enrolment in the technical colleges and vocational subjects. (See Figure 3 below)

Moreover, the long overdue accreditation of the trade subjects by the National Board of Technical Education (NBTE) is effected. As at date, over 30 trade subjects have full accreditation by the NBTE across the technical colleges in the state. Meanwhile the number of technical colleges has risen to twelve (12).

 

Figure 3

 

Private Sector Engagement – The Bridge Programme

Anambra state has strategically positioned education for sustainability through the continuous collaboration/liaison between the schools and the private sector. Establishment of a partnership in 2014 between Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Nnewi, Federal Polytechnic, Oko and the Technical and Vocational Colleges kick started the partnership as one of the core measures made by the government to ensure education for sustainable development in the state. This led to the floating of Vehicle Body Building Work course in Nigerian Science and Technical College, Nnewi, which has since been accredited by NBTE. Since then, over 15 memoranda of understanding (MOUs) have been signed between the schools and hospitality industries, mechanical industries and construction industries. Each of these partnerships has been activated, leading to training and retraining of staff, students and the private sector employees.

 

 

Figure 4

 Hidden

 

Students of technical colleges working at Innoson factory at Nnewi

Figure 5    Hidden                                                                                     

Figure 6     Hidden                                          

Re-Engaging Identity and Value Orientation

For the Obiano led administration, introducing value based education for effective re-orientation is imperative in Anambra State.  As can be seen in other countries earlier discussed, ESD thrives on values, skills and re-orientation. Ten (10) point shared values and inspiring State Anthem popularised in both private and public schools for children have continually been a moral and patriotic measure for sound upbringing. The ten (10) share values are noted below;

 

Our shared Values

  1. To make a positive impact on everyone I meet and everywhere I  go;
  2. To be a solution provider and not a part of the problem to be solved;
  3. To be a role model worthy of emulation;
  4. To be the best in all I do; particularly the things I am naturally good at
  5. To do the right things at all times regardless of who is doing the wrong thing;
  6. To value time and make the best use of it;
  7. To care and show respect through their words and actions;
  8. To consciously build great legacy starting now, today and everyday
  9. To live a life of integrity and honour
  10. To make my family, my state, my nation and my God proud.

 

Anambra Education Anthem

Also popularized is the Anambra Education Anthem that reads in part;

…In unison therefore we say:

Hard work is a great legacy

Diligence a coveted virtue

Our shared values we must embrace Cleanliness is next to godliness

Together we say NO to cultism, NO to drug and Exam malpractice,

NO to Miracle centres and   indiscipline (twice)

 

The emphasis here is the eschewing of all forms of vices that impinge on the creativity and confidence of the students. As seen in other countries of the world such as China, Botswana, Arab region, etc, values rank high in any sustainable development. Reorienting the minds of our children towards the right values is a strategy adopted by the Anambra education system towards sustainability in education. This has yielded good results as WAEC ranked Anambra State as one of the states where from 2014; examination malpractice has consistently been on the decline. Anambra State was named by WAEC as one of the eight (8) states (Anambra, Bayelsa, Delta, Enugu, Kebbi, Plateau, Yobe, Zamfara) that recorded consistent decrease in the level of malpractice during the period considered (2014 -2016). Anambra State equally received in November 2016 a letter of commendation from WAEC for credible conduct of WAEC Examination in the state.

 

ICT Drives

In the words of Arne Duncan;

In the 21st century, students must be fully engaged. This requires the use of technology tools and resources, involvement with interesting and relevant projects, and learning environments—including online environments—that are supportive and safe.   … In the 21st century, educators must be given and be prepared to use technology tools; they must be collaborators in learning—constantly seeking knowledge and acquiring new skills along with their students.”[14]

 

Gov. Obiano has entrenched basic ICT into all programs at all levels and curricula, achieving computer for every teacher in 2015 (one teacher, one laptop) and hopefully hand-held devices for students by 2018.

The emphasis on ICT draws us to some policy thrusts. For example, for a teacher to head the school as a head teacher or principal, he or she must be ICT compliant and would show competence in ICT examination.

 

 

 

Figure 7: Hon Commissioner for Education at an ICT training session for Teachers

The resultant effect of the ICT drive is that at present, over 45% of the Anambra State teachers are Microsoft certified.

 

 

Figure 8: Professional Development Exams taken by Anambra Teachers

Lessons and Implications for Faculties of Education

Having outlined the efforts of Anambra State towards ensuring education for sustainable development, what are the observations and lessons from the State’s re-engineering of education? What implication do they have for the faculties of education?

  1. Human capital is the key for sustainable development

Human capital and manpower is very essential towards ensuring sustainable development in education. While education meets the needs of the present, it does not compromise the ability of the future generations to meet own needs. This ability to meet these needs is determined by human capital.

  1. Dearth of teachers in the trade subjects and technical subjects

It is a well known fact that no educational system in a nation can rise above the quality of its teachers. In other words, the success of the system rests on the availability of good and qualified teachers who are internally motivated. Teachers are the way to improvement since they are the final brokers when it comes to educational policy. There is need to float more trade subjects in our faculty of education, to meet the demands in our secondary schools.

  1. Enterprise is a huge challenge for teachers

Enterprising teachers contribute to sustainable development. The enterprising attributes therefore must include creativity, initiative taking, analytical ability, high autonomy, achievement motivation and financial literacy. Education must be able to pay its way through productive units.

  1. Many of the teachers lack the new sets of required skills

The world is evolving and there are new innovations every now and then. Most teachers lack adequate skills required to keep updated to the latest trends in teaching and instructing. A good example of this is the use of Information and communication technologies (ICT). A teacher’s deficiency in the area of ICT in this modern world is almost a complete emptiness. Faculties of education must make ICT compulsory for the trainee teachers.

  1. The challenge of training existing teachers is worse than that of recruiting and training new teachers

Training of new teachers is easily done. This is because there are stipulated requirements on the kind of teachers and their fields needed for consideration for employment. This makes it easier when there is further need to train them to key into such field. This is not the same with existing teachers where many of them are already accustomed to a one-way operation. It is a great challenge changing such one-way to diversified ways through training. It is thus imperative that would-be teachers are imbued with the modern skills when in schools than when they are out of it.

 

 

  1. Sustainable development is achievable with public private partnership.

Creating partnership between the business community and the education community is best for the training of young people. This is because development itself is a process of societal advancement, where improvement in the well being of people are generated through strong partnerships between all sectors, corporate bodies and other groups in the society.

  1. Addressing ethical challenges is key to sustainable development

Education brings about the moral development and spiritual uplifting of the human personality and of the community as a whole. Ethical, moral and civic values are needed for laying a solid foundation for life-long learning. It is thus important to address ethical challenges in education so as to ensure sustainable development. Professional ethics and values must run throughout the duration of training of would-be teachers. Any hopeful teacher found to be engaged in any form of sharp practices need to be disengaged from the system.

 

Conclusion

Functional Education is no doubt the cornerstone to achieving the needed sustainable development of any nation. Achieving sustainable national development is the goal of all developing nations. Nigeria is not an exception. In as much as sustainable development cannot be achieved by mere technological solutions, political regulation or financial instruments alone, there is thus a need to invest, encourage and enlighten people on education, ensuring re-orientation, awareness and mind-regeneration of people’s psyche on education to enable progressive change in the way we think and act. The role of government at all levels to facilitate the achievement of any development is also paramount. The Anambra State government has set a leading mark in this dimension as an adoptable measure towards achieving this sustainable development. This the government has done through the Ministry of Education – changing the psyche of the children, insisting on value-based education; training and retraining of teachers, public – private partnership, education for employment (E4E); etc. However, the need for monitoring, supervising and ensuring that all the financial and other investment on education for the purpose of achieving sustainable development need to be sustained. .

 

References

Abubakar Aminu Boyi (2013), Education and Sustainable National Development in Nigeria: Challenges and Way Forward, Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences MCSER Publishing, Rome-Italy

Age, E. (2005), Objectives of Teaching Education in Nigeria, London, British Council

Buckler, C. and Creech, H. (2014), Shaping the future we want: UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development; final report. UNESCO

Munasinghe, S. (2004), Effective Instructions Through Dynamic Discipline. Ohio, Charles E. Merill

Obasanjo O. (2000), A Speech in Dakar, Senegal. Farfaru Journal Vol. I. June, 2006.

Tahir, G. (2001) Federal Government Intervention in U.B. E. form 1(1) 1-12 Kaduna, Nigeria

UNESCO (2008), Regional Guiding Framework of ESD for the Arab Region, Beirut

UNESCO (2013), Proposal for a Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development as follow-up to the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (DESD) after 2014. UNESCO General Conference, 37th Session, Paris, 4 November 2013. Available online at: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/unesco-world-conference-on-esd-2014/esdafter-2014/global-action-programme/

UNESCO. (2014a), Aichi-Nagoya Declaration on Education for Sustainable Development. Retrieved 19/01/2018 from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/ images/0023/002310/231074e.pdf

UNESCO. (2014b), Roadmap for implementing the Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development, Paris: UNESCO, Retrieved 3. 9. 2016 from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0023/002305/230514e.pdf

World Commission on Environment and Development (1987), Our common future, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

[1] UNESCO (2013). Proposal for a Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development as follow-up to the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (DESD) after 2014. UNESCO General Conference, 37th Session, Paris, 4November 2013.Available online at:http://www.unesco.org/new/en / unesco-world-conference-on-esd-2014/esdafter-2014/global-action-programme/

[2] Buckler, C. and Creech, H. (2014). Shaping the future we want: UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development; final report. UNESCO

[3] World Commission on Environment and Development. (1987). Our common future. Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. 43

[4] World Commission on Environment and Development. (1987), Our common future. Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. 43

[5] Munasinghe, S. (2004), Effective Instructions Through Dynamic Discipline. Ohio, Charles E. Merill

[6] Age, E.(2005). Objectives of Teaching Education In Nigeria. London, British Council, p.85

[7] UNESCO. (2014a). Aichi-Nagoya Declaration on Education for Sustainable Development. Retrieved 19/01/2018 from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0023/002310/231074e.pdf.

[8] UNESCO. (2014b), Roadmap for implementing the Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development, Paris: UNESCO, Retrieved 19/01/2018 from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0023/002305/230514e.pdf, p.33

[9]  UNESCO (2008), Beirut, Regional Guiding Framework of ESD for the Arab Region,

[10] Tahir, G. (2001) Federal Government Intervention in U.B. E. form 1(1) 1-12 Kaduna, Nigeria, p. 21

[11] Abubakar Aminu Boyi (2013), Education and Sustainable National Development in Nigeria: Challenges and Way Forward, Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences MCSER Publishing, Rome-Italy, p. 149

[12] Obasanjo O. (2000). A Speech in Dakar, Senegal. Farfaru Journal Vol. I. June, 2006.

[13] Gov. Obiano’s blueprint declaration on education through the Strategic objective

[14] A quote from Arne Duncan’s speech on March 3, 2010, Arne Duncan was the U.S. Secretary of Education.


Volume 15, No.1 Article 1

EDUCATION FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA

 

Prof. Dr. Abdalla Uba Adamu

Vice-Chancellor

National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN)

Jabi, Abuja, Nigeria

 

Introduction

The ‘education for development’ (EfD) paradigm has long shaped perceptions of education as the primary tool for the social and economic advancement of developing countries. Based on a human capital theory that sees the production of qualified manpower as the main resource for development, state and international efforts have focused on the production of qualified students and other personnel as the mainstay of their EfDwork.[1] Increased enrolment, higher retention, and even higher transition from one level of education to another is heralded as the most effective way to achieve development because it produces more and better manpower. Accordingly, from the early 1960s to the mid-1970s, governments in developed and less developed countries encouraged investment in education to enhance the quality of human productivity in hopes of spurring development.

By the late 1970s, however, the lack of economic growth in most parts of the world slowed investment in education, and researchers started to question the feasibility of human capital theory as a basis for development strategy (Webster, 1984; Psacharopoulos and Woodhall, 1985; Fagerlind and Saha, 1989). Researchers no longer accepted that educational expenditure aimed at increasing enroll mentrates was enough to enhance economic productivity, both in developed and less developed countries (Fagerlind and Saha, 1989).

Criticism of the EfD paradigmtypically centered on its core assumptions. First, the theory assumes that there is a perfect market for labor, and that better educated and more skilled people obtain better jobs and are eventually more productive—conditions that do not hold in the real world. Second, human capital theory does not consider factors other than education, such as job satisfaction and working conditions, which could contribute to higher worker productivity. Third, the human capital theory fails to recognize education as a screening or filtering device (Psacharopoulos and Woodhall, 1985). That is, employers may use schools to identify workers with superior ability even if education does not directly improve workers’ skills and productivity. Finally, as Fagerlind and Saha (1989) propose, education exists in a dialectical relationship with society. It is at once a product of society and at the same time acts continually upon that society. The contribution of education to the development process, therefore, depends upon the nature of the other dimensions of development in a given society at a particular time. By late 1980s, in other words, it was becoming increasingly clear that the education industry should aim at more than making sure children enroll in school and pass with good grades. The search for these additional dimensions and inputs led to the emergence of a new paradigm in the education for development debate: Education for Sustainable Development (ESD).

Sustainable development is a difficult and evolving concept. One of its original definitions is credited to the Brundtland Commission: “Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (World Commission on Environment and Development, 1987: 43). It is generally thought to have three components –environment, society, and economy – each of whose well-being is intertwined with the others. For example, a healthy, prosperous society relies on a healthy environment to provide food and resources, safe drinking water, and clean air for its citizens. The sustainability paradigm rejects the contention that casualties in the environmental and social realms are inevitable and acceptable consequences of economic development. Thus it is a paradigm for thinking about a future in which environmental, societal, and economic considerations are balanced in the pursuit of development and improved quality of life.

Since the Earth Summit in 1992, there has been increasing recognition of the critical role of education in promoting sustainable consumption and production patterns. What eventually became fashionable as Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) entailed two distinct approaches in developing countries. The first called for the heavy involvement of domestic and international organizations in planning and implementing educational policies and programs. The aim was to create a socially equitable and politically accountable process of education provision as an agent for development on a global standard. In Nigeria, international partners such as The World Bank, Unicef, Unesco, and national agencies such as the Federal Ministry of Education, all pushed the new perspective – though as we will see they often continued to implement programs based on the old EfD approaches. The Sustainable Development approach called for education planners to consider more indigenous perspective son education. Sustainable development education carries with it the idea of implementing programs that are locally relevant and culturally appropriate. As Olsen (1996: 187) noted, “We define “sustainable” development as development which respects the balances provided by political stability, social equity, economic stability, and development in harmony with nature.” As a result, programs must be created for each region. Rather than searching for curricular models to adopt throughout a country, ministries of education and school districts should invest their resources in developing processes by which communities of different sizes and traditions can define their own programs.

As these distinct approaches suggest, there is little agreement about the meaning of sustainable development and whether or not it is attainable – a discord that has stymied efforts to develop new education policies. The holistic nature of sustainable development opens it to a broad range of interpretations and misinterpretations depending on the particular lenses of practitioners. Economists and ‘developers’, for example, view it in terms of economic sustainability, environmentalists as environmental sustainability, and economists as socio-economic sustainability. These discrepancies often result in conflicting scenarios at the operational level.

In addition, there is the lack of clarity regarding the practical goals of ESD. In simple terms, educators want to know “What am I to do differently? What should I do or say now that I didn’t say before?” These apparently simple questions perplex most experts. Each country must decide whether its educators are being asked to teach about sustainable development or to go further by changing the goals and methods of education to achieve sustainable development. Those that elect only to teach about sustainable development may find that it comes across as simply an abstract concept that does not give students the skills, perspectives, values, and knowledge to live sustainably in their community.

In addition, while it is a good idea to bring together the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainability, the concept of sustainable development itself faced the major contradiction of having to exist in global capitalism, which is rooted in the exploitation of natural and human resources and informed by the ideology of economic growth and modernization. Development seen as economic growth often becomes a top-down process in which experts impose their own perception of development on local people considered backward and ignorant. Although this approach has fueled the growth of most developed countries, it has led to major environmental, social and economic problems which the world is trying to address today (Babikwa 2004).

In sum, EfD explores the relationship between education and development through strategies such as teacher competencies, use of new technologies, gender equality, and infrastructural provisions in education at both formal and non-formal levels – all designed to produce greater human capital. Education for Sustainable Development, on the other hand, is learner and outcome focused. Its provisions and policies purport to allow every human being to acquire the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values necessary to shape a sustainable future. It also requires participatory teaching and learning methods that motivate and empower learners to change their behavior and take action for sustainability. Thus, it promotes competencies like critical thinking, imagining future scenarios, and making decisions in a collaborative way.

 

Education and Development Efforts in Nigeria

Education in Nigeria offers many examples of the quandaries of education for development. Nigeria itself presents a paradox. It is rich in resources, yet its people are poor. Despite Nigeria’s strong economic track record, poverty is endemic due to heavy reliance on oil wealth and a corresponding de-emphasis on non-oil growth. As a 2013 report argued

Despite a plethora of natural and human resources, relatively strong growth, and its ranking as a middle-income country, Nigeria has struggled to make progress on key development indicators. About 68 percent of Nigerians are living in poverty (below $1.25 daily)…while adult illiteracy rates for adults (both sexes) is approximately 61 percent. Nigeria is also currently failing to provide education to many of its primary-school-age children (The Good Planet Foundation 2013, p. 1).

 

Some of the hindrances to enhanced growth include the investment climate, infrastructure, incentives, the lack of articulated agricultural policies, and the low quality and irrelevance of tertiary education. From 2009, security challenges caused by an extremely violent insurgency compounded these issues.

The attainment of independence from the British in 1960 led to a condemnation of the objectives of colonial primary education. The clamor for an education system which reflected the realities of the Nigerian nation reached a crescendo during the oil boom of the 1970s. In 1976, the quest to design something indigenous, coupled with the need to observe the right of the child to education, led to the declaration of the Universal Primary Education (UPE). This policy ushered in a tremendous increase in enrolment as well as extensive community efforts to develop primary education. There was so much enthusiasm that primary education became the major sector for extending government presence to many villages, towns and communities. However, with it came increased costs and funding needs.

In 1977, the Nigerian government promulgated a National Policy on Education to provide a basis for an improved curriculum to meet the nation’s developmental needs. Many lofty ideals were laid down without adequate long term planning on the assumption that funds would be available indefinitely to meet the needs of the sub-sector. When policy implementation commenced in the 1980s, however, economic recession had set in. As the economy declined, the school population and number of schools grew. As a result, classrooms became over-crowded; structures fell into dilapidation; teaching facilities and materials were grossly inadequate. In addition, the dearth of data for effective planning and management became acute as teachers’ competences could not meet the needs of increased responsibilities. Finally, constant changes in government created political insecurity.

Additional problems arose due to government responsibility towards other sectors of the economy. At the dawn of independence, the government devoted as much as 40% of its annual budgets to education. But as pressures for other social and economic services mounted, particularly investment in roads, construction of secretariats, extension of pipe-borne water, modernization of agriculture, and development of industries to create employment, the share of annual budgets allocated to education began to decline, with the lowest figures recorded in the 1990s. The government could no longer bear the financial burden for education alone. Although education continued to attract a huge share of annual national budgets, the gap between estimated expenditure and actual allocation widened, leaving several needy areas, including teacher’s salaries.

To address these problems, the Federal government set up the National Primary Education Commission (NPEC). The decree that set up NPEC also established the State Primary Schools Management Boards (PSMB) to perform a similar function within each state and the Local Government Education Authorities (LGEA) to manage schools within their respective areas. While this arrangement was in place, a great deal of improvement was recorded in primary education funding and management. Salaries were paid regularly and workshops held for inspectors and head teachers.[2]

It was during this transition that the World Bank first intervened in Nigerian education. In 1989, a World Bank study asserted that Nigeria, along with many developing countries, had not met the objectives set by them for the primary education sub-sector. The sector had been ineffective in developing in pupils the core skills stipulated in the national curriculum. Above all, it had not been able to provide all school age children, particularly girls, access to primary schooling. Consequently, national efforts to develop a human capital base for development had been seriously jeopardized.

 

World Bank concerns, focused as they were was on educational capacity and infrastructural building, fell directly within the purview of EfD, despite a growing worldwide interest in ESD, an interest that the World Bank also touted. To assist Nigeria in improving overall performance in primary education, the Nigeria Primary Education Project was approved by the World Bank in 1990, signed in 1991, and became effective in 1992, to last till June 1997. It became the first in a series of interventions in Nigerian education targeted at achieving the ‘education for development’ objective. Yet by the mid-2000s, a series of think-tanks, workshops, and conferences revealed that the major challenges persisted:

 

  • Low enrolment, completion and progression rates at all levels of education with variations among regions
  • Inequities in terms of gender, geographical zones, states, local governments, and schools
  • Poor quality of learning outcomes
  • Inappropriate curriculum for the needs of a growing economy
  • Inadequate attention to the learning needs of adults and youth in the non-formal setting
  • Poor teacher training and development at both pre-service and in-service levels
  • Weak system of staff deployment leading to large numbers of unqualified or under-qualified teachers.
  • Poor and inadequate infrastructural facilities for teaching and learning
  • Weak institutions and poor management systems leading to weak planning and monitoring and evaluation
  • Limited capacity for data collection and analysis for decision making
  • Examination malpractice and cultism
  • Weak external and internal systems of communication
  • Dissatisfaction with the public education system, leading to the expansion of private schools and the consequent exodus of influential stakeholders out of the state sector (FME 2007: 10-11).

 

These findings prompted further interventions. USAID’s Northern Nigerian Education Initiative (NEI), for example, tried to expand the provision of universal basic education and delivery of education services in northern Nigeria.[3]Through the Education Sector Support Programme in Nigeria (2008-2015), Britain’s Department for International Development (DfID) sought to improve the planning, financing and delivery of basic education services and increase access, equity and quality at the federal level and in six Nigerian states.

Yet the education machinery is not working – even according to EfD indicators of examination scores and enrollment rates. After many ‘mobilizations’, workshops and reports, government officers still lack a strategy to improve examination results, the main benchmark of any education project in Nigeria. In Nigeria, the two main examinations students take at the end of their high school (senior secondary school) are the West African Examination Council’s Senior Secondary Certificate Examination (WASSCE) and National Examination Council Senior School Certificate Examination (NECO SSCE).[4]

 

The outcomes of both WAEC and NECO examination performances has consistently painted a bleak picture. For instance, data available from the Public Affairs Department of the West African Examinations Council, WAEC, in Lagos shows a consistently poor examination performance by Nigerian students, as indicated in Table 2.

 

Table 2: Trend of mass failure of students in the May/June West African Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) between 2003 and2010

Year %Failed % Passed
2003 80.74 19.26
2004 81.74 18.26
2005 72.47 27.53
2006 84.44 15.56
2007 74.46 25.54
2008 86.24 13.76
2009 74.01 25.99
2010 75.06 24.94
Total 78.65 21.35

Source: Public Affairs Department of WAEC, Lagos

 

The failure rate of almost 79% in the most credible examination in Nigeria calls into question the efficacy of educational provisions by both the government and international agency partners.

 

Data on school survival, completion, and transition rates are similarly bleak. The ‘survival rate’ –the percentage of pupils enrolled in Primary 1 in a given school year who reach Primary 5 – has fluctuated over time. Data provided by the educational authorities show that the proportion of students who survived in 2000 was 97 percent, but by 2009 it was only 72.3 percent. While an increasingly high proportion of school-age children are actually enrolling in school, more of them are dropping out over the course of their education. ThePrimary6completionrateis similarly dire. The average trend over the last five years shows an almost 11% drop.

Data on transition rates are difficult to obtain. Not only are there constant drop-outs, but cohort studies are unable to gather precise data on pupils as they progress from one level of schooling to another. However, a measure can be obtained in the absolute population of students at junior secondary school (junior high) as compared with similar data on primary school pupils in the same years. This is shown in Table 1.

 

Table 1: Basic Education Population, 2006-2010

Year Primary Junior High School
2006 21,717,789 2,643,358
2007 20,469,395 2,998,372
2008 18,980,395 3,451,078
2009 18,818,544 3,758,093
2010 19,042,167 4,125,211

Source: Compiled from National Bureau of Statistics

 

While no correlation per year is suggested, the juxtaposition of the primary and JSS populations clearly indicates a wide disparity, suggesting that far fewer children are in JSS schools than graduate from primary schools. There is a need to capture these children and determine why they remain out of school, what they do, and how to get them back into the schools.

 

The Paradigm Remains the Same

These failures illustrate what I call the ‘paradigm paradox’– the rhetorical commitment to a new paradigm but the continued pursuit of an old one.  Under normal circumstances, the shift from one paradigm—inherited or hybridized—to a newer one—development-partner oriented, ‘global’—should address current problems in more effective ways, leading to growth and development. The paradox is that despite multiple engagements in Nigerian education by development partners, advocating for change from without, the results and the underlying administrative structures remain virtually the same. These interventions led to the questioning of the existing stability and demand for change, but paradoxically they merely reinforced the existing EfD structures rather than promoting ESD.I argue, therefore, that the various models and theories of development simply do not work when faced with the reality of contemporary governance in Nigeria; despite their neat categorizations of development behavior, the ground-level reality simply does not operate along their theoretical lines.

I will illustrate with a recent activity in the north Nigerian state of Zamfara focused on determining the total educational financial expenditure for a given year. The aim of the exercise, funded by an international development agency, was to assist State officials in determining the best ways to plan their education expenditure. The first problem faced was that the officials—privately—stated they did not ask for the activity, and therefore could not provide counterpart funding to sustain it, as requested by the partners. As good as the project seemed, it was not theirs, was not factored in their approved budget, and they therefore could not fund it.

This highlights the wider problem of shared ministerial responsibility that often goes unacknowledged in donor plans. Popular thinking promotes the myth that an educated society is the responsibility of the Ministry of Education alone. However, the ministries of environment, commerce, state, health, and others all have a stake in education. In principle, combining expertise, resources, and funding from many ministries increases the possibility of building a successful education program. In many countries, however, responsibilities are modularized and compartmentalized according to the supervising ministry. Under one USAID education financing project in Nigeria, it became difficult to get non-education ministries who provided education services to come on board. They did not see why they should provide financial data to a ministry that was not theirs. The ministry of education, in turn, suddenly realized that it was the sole custodian of education – no matter where it is offered – and therefore wanted to re-evaluate all educational facilities in other portfolios, a task that deviated from the core project. In the attempt to streamline data, in other words, the project heightened ministerial competition.

Ultimately, an agreement was worked out to launch the project. However, while officials co-operated with consultants, agreed to proposed structures, and provided the information needed, private off-record comments reflect bemusement at the year-long exercise. The comments mainly focused on the motives of the funders—and theories ranged from what Nigerians call ‘spooky stuff’ (that every development partner activity dealing with figures is cover for spying!) to linking the process to violent uprisings in the Middle East. In one instance consultants were perceived to be spies for the Nigerian government’s anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, due to the insistence on collecting expenditure data on every aspect of education, down to the amount spent on gasoline for generators.

 

The use of local consultants, or ‘credible outsiders,’ with a national or regional reputation made it possible to overcome the suspicions – even thought white team leaders often prompt further ‘spooky stuff theory’: the belief that they are tied to US secret services and on a spying mission.(Oddly, the British do not seem to elicit that sort of interpretation). As a result, some partners reduce the presence of non-Africans in the field, relying on ‘local’ consultants to face ministry officials, gather data, and report to the higher metropolitan level.

Worrying, however, were off-record comments by officials at the lack of synchronization between what the development partners saw through an EfD lens and what the local officials described as ‘realities on ground’ that were indifferent to theoretical perspectives. The mismatch between rhetoric and practice, which extends to other initiatives as well, is revealed in at least four ways.

First, there was lack of synergy among the development partners in the education sector. In north Nigeria, for instance, more than 10 individual development partners descended into schools, offices, and communities to provide ‘development assistance’ without coming up with a unified approach that looked at the local systems holistically. For the most part, they kept their individual programs close to their chests, giving little clue to others about what they were doing, and therefore often duplicating efforts—to the bemusement of recipients.

Second, none of the development partners seemed aware of what worked or did not work in the past. There was thus a lack of historical awareness as to how the situation got to where the development partners intervened in the first place. It would appear that someone came up with a concept, sold it to a funding agency, got approval, and took the first flight to Nigeria to start a project. Due to lack of clarity and continuity in government policies, Nigeria’s educational system relies substantially on interventions by international aid agencies. And yet these interventions are based not on identified needs of the Nigerian education system – which do not seem to be of much concern – but on the wider global concern with education for development. This often causes a rift between what government policies set out to achieve and what international agencies do.

Third, some of the agencies exhibited a high degree of naiveté when it came to offering development assistance because their conception of what constituted a problem differed from what was seen by their target beneficiaries. This was illustrated in 2013 by an NGO which selected target states in Muslim north Nigeria for carrying out a program of ‘out-of-school girl-child’ education for girls ‘aged 16-18,’ deemed vulnerable and therefore in need of survival skills. They found it difficult to accept that in northern Nigeria girls in that age-group are not ‘girls’, but married women, most often in purdah matrimonial situations—and therefore are not available for ‘survival skills’ training. Yet they ignored the real targets—pre-teen girls who were out of school and hawking food items on the streets, where they were vulnerable to all sorts of predators. This was because the original metropolitan mandate specified the higher age bracket, whom it assumed would be more aware of their world.

This naivete could also make partners miss the ways their own projects were being manipulated by recipients for individual ends. Another agency in the north of Nigeria insisted on implementing Conditional Cash Transfers (CCT) to families as a means of encouraging them to keep their girls in schools. Development partners failed to notice two problems. First, unrecorded observations of the CCT program indicated that the girls and their parents were motivated by the money to attend schools, but not to continue with their education; they almost always got married immediately after high school. They came to the cash dispensary centers for money, stayed for a required period to learn, and then left. The cash inducement alone attracted them, not the desire to learn. Ironically, those that continue their education beyond high school are those that do not need the CCT facility due to higher economic status. Second, a change in state government put a stop to the program—not because it was inherently bad, but because any credit for program success would go to the previous regime, a situation the new administration could not tolerate. The project was restructured to include the children of party faithful; children whose parents were in opposition were edged out.

Fourth, the education interventions lacked sustainability. Since development partners had metropolitan funding, it was easy to travel widely, set up project offices, buy computers, pay for training, produce manuals, and print attractive reports. The partners rarely pondered what would happen when the funding ended and they left the field. They seemed to expect that local managers would simply maintain the tempo of activities. When another agency entered the picture, it therefore did not bother to bridge the gap that existed between the previous project and the new one. In this sense, ‘paradigm paradox’ – a structural change that leads to stasis – resulted from both local governance and international project management. In the end, the anticipated model of change advocated and implemented by development partners in Nigerian education rarely led to any dynamic measurable difference.

Ultimately, efforts by international agencies concentrate on educational provisions geared to improving enrolment or accountability, typical EfD preoccupations. Yet the fundamental problem of education in Nigeria is not whether students attend schools or not, but that they attend the schools with poor learning outcomes, as noted in the examination results cited above.

 

Implications for Sustainable Development Practices

Perhaps the biggest problem of implementing EfD in Nigeria is lack of clarity about whose agenda is being served. The Nigerian government seeks to ensure that education serves development purposes by instituting programs and plans (targeted towards achieving ever changing goals– e.g. Education for All, Vision 2000, 2010, 2015 and 2020) designed to improve citizen welfare. Development partners, by contrast, seem more concerned with international benchmarks than local circumstances. For the most part, they appear to be only vaguely aware of government plans, and are certainly unaware of their own ignorance of local needs. This author once had a consultant from a major development NGO request an explanation of the structure of the Nigerian educational system whose problems he was employed to synthesize! In another case, a consultant explained to trainees how an Excel spreadsheet could be used to create charts without knowing that they were seasoned computer users who had written the briefing report – complete with charts – on which his own presentation was based. Many expatriate staff fall into what Nigerians refer to as the ‘squeaky clean lot’—fresh graduates from US or UK universities who studied ‘development’ and came to Africa filled with messianic zeal but clueless about the internecine struggles for power and the raw inefficiency of the system they were trying to ‘redeem’. At the very least, these examples suggest a striking disregard for local reality.

Overcoming this attitude requires a fundamentally new understanding by those engaged in the development work. First, one must reject the old anthropological model of coming to a ‘barren’ land. For the most part beneficiaries are aware of their problems, and most requests for partnership ultimately comedown to providing funding for solutions that are locally identified.

Second, interventions should be based on specific requests—a hard thing to do for a partner with tons of goodwill. The reality, however, is that beneficiaries need to specify a targeted intervention and show their commitment to its sustainability. The partners themselves have to make subsequent engagement contingent on clear proof of the sustainability of previous interventions.

Third, development partners working in the same area need to be aware of each other and how their various efforts can be harmonized and synchronized—instead of the current situation in which various partners work in the same domain without coordinating.

Fourth, development partners must understand the nature of educational provisions and the receptivity of their target areas. The lack of understanding leads to educational plans that are universally the same, reproducing in one place what was done in another.

There is also a need to base interventions on direct system analysis rather than ‘anticipated development needs,’ which take little consideration for local sustainability. For the most part, current ‘capacity training’ workshops, sensitization meetings, development teams, and other activities are sustained not by the recipients, but by the funding of the development partners alone. Rarely do recipient countries build such activities into their long-term strategy budgets. It is hardly surprising, therefore, that they rarely last.

 

Conclusions

It would be pessimistic in the extreme to suggest that the widespread faith in educational investment as a component of economic development was an aberration. There is evidence in many studies of productivity benefits derived from educational investment.[5]How then do we resolve the paradox of a clear link between education and development and yet the failure of many education projects to achieve significant results?

First, we must recognize that there is no single answer to the question of how education promotes development: there are many answers depending on circumstance, developmental status, and the specifications of the variables.

Second, the direct policy implications of macro-level research are very limited. They are constrained by dependence on historical relationships which may or may not persist, and the level of aggregation is often so high that effective and ineffective years of schooling are treated as similar. The application of findings from individual countries or groups to other countries is analytically hazardous. General and empirically verified truths about the relation between education and economic development may not hold in every circumstance.

Third, educational effects are associated with various externalities – school fees, instability due to insurgencies and political upheavals, raw poverty, creeping malaise among youth, political indifference to plight of the power – that lay beyond the control of particular projects. Without awareness of these externalities, project goals may be undermined.

Fourth, there are many methodological questions in the analysis of relationships between education and economic development which have only partial resolutions. For instance, there has been no convincing data showing the link between earned income and educational status in Nigeria. With an fluid economy, such absolute correlations become difficult to make.

And finally, as Hopkins and Mckeown (1999) argue, sustainable development will require major changes in policy and mindset, as well as fundamental changes in our lifestyle, economy, and worldview. To date, few financial resources have been dedicated to implementing education programs for sustainable development. Yet even with resources, the reform process is fraught with challenges. The initial step is to develop an awareness within the educational community and wider public that reorienting education to achieve sustainability is essential. Unfortunately, the need to achieve sustainable development is not seen as sufficiently important to spark a major response in Nigeria. Attempts at awareness-raising are often met with cynicism from officials who fail to share the ‘larger’ vision held by development partners; instead, officials are typically concerned with solving immediate problems. If leaders at all levels of governance are to make progress, the recognition and active involvement of the education sector is imperative.

The effort to win over the education sector to the new concept is made more difficult by the fact that sustainable development is a complex, evolving concept that encompasses intricate, complicated interactions of natural and human systems. Sustainable development education, by its nature, is holistic and interdisciplinary and depends on concepts and analytical tools from a variety of disciplines. For that reason, it is difficult to teach in traditional school settings where studies are divided in a disciplinary framework. The inherent complexity is exacerbated in Africa by the introduction of a variety of educational strategies that look like experimental models because they have not been tried anywhere else. Successful national education campaigns often have simple messages, such as vaccinate your children, boil drinking water, do not drive drunk, and do not take drugs. Success in the complex arena of sustainable development education will take much longer and be more costly. The challenge to educators is to develop messages that illustrate complexity without overwhelming or confusing students.

The establishment of ESD programs therefore will require accountable leadership and realistic strategies. Because sustainable development education is a lifelong process, the formal, non-formal, and informal educational sectors must work together to accomplish local sustainability goals. In an ideal world, the three sectors would divide the enormous task of sustainable development education by identifying target audiences as well as themes of sustainability. They would then work innovatively within their realms. This division of effort would reach a broader spectrum of people and prevent redundant effort. Many resources currently exist in the educational and administrative labor pools. Talented educators – especially in the fields of the environment, population, and development – already teach strands of sustainable development education and could easily expand their focus to include other concepts. In developing curricula, however, someone must have a sufficiently wide-ranging vision to pull together the pieces and form a complete picture of the role that individuals, communities, and nations play in a sustainable world.

Finally, our societies will need to examine how goods are manufactured and consumed; the way we use, preserve, conserve, and restore natural resources; and the way we perceive and rank social, political, and economic needs. Sustainable development will require that we learn new ways to think about problems, make decisions, and implement solutions. Education is the key to this effort. Development practitioners can play a strong role in the process only if they allow recipient partners to conduct the system analysis of their educational situations, rather than coming down with neat theoretical models that do not match local conditions.

 

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[1] The EfD paradigm rests on a decades-old literature. While many early studies focused on industrialized countries, there were important contributions that compared developed and developing economies. In a study of the rates of return to educational investment in 44 countries, Psacharopoulos (1981)(cited in Fagerlind and Saha, 1989) found that primary education yields the highest social and private returns; that private returns are higher than social returns, particularly at the university level; and that all rates of return to investment in education exceed the rates of return on alternative investments in capital. He also found that developing countries’ rates of return on education investments are higher than those of advanced industrialized countries at comparable levels.

[2] In 1991, Decree 2 and 3 abolished the NPEC and handed the management of primary schools over to the Local Governments. Primary schools once more witnessed a serious downturn. Teachers’ salaries went unpaid for months, and teachers embarked on strike after strike. Parents who could afford it withdrew their children and wards from public schools and enrolment dwindled drastically. The drop-out rate increased and the incidence of street children grew. Fortunately, the government gave ear to public outcries and, through decree 96 of 1993, reestablished the NPEC, later to become the Universal Basic Education Commission; its state counterpart, the State Primary Education Boards (SPEB), later the State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB); and the Local government, LGEAs.

[3]NEI was designed to strengthen state and local government systems that delivered education services for out-of-school youth, orphans, and vulnerable children. The project started as State Education Accounts (SEA) in Kano in about 2005 and ended as Northern Education Initiative (NEI) in Sokoto in 2013.

[4]Students sitting for both examinations are allowed to select up to nine subjects. Candidates are expected to pass five at credit level to gain admission to a university in Nigeria. Most courses will require that the five credit subjects include English Language and Mathematics.

[5]Various studies have found that:

  • farmers (in 18 low-income countries) with four years of primary education produced 8% more (1980, Farmer Education and Farm Efficiency, World Bank);
  • a one-year increase in schooling can increase wages by more than 10% – and has raised farm output and income by over 2% (Korea) and 5% (Malaysia) (World Development Report 1991: 52-53);
  • a 1% improvement in national literacy is directly associated with a two-year gain in life expectancy (Preston, 1976);
  • education is directly related to health: the higher the parents’ education, the less likely their child will die (Cochrane et al., 1980);
  • children of educated mothers are more likely to be enrolled in school, and to attain higher education (World Bank, 1986);
  • women’s education leads to better family health, especially for the children and themselves, partly because of higher family income but also due to the mother’s increased knowledge and use of better health and nutritional practices (World Development Report 1993: Investing in Health).