IMPACT OF EDUCATION IN RURAL DEVELOPMENT PROCESS A CASE STUDY OF MUSHIN LGA, LAGOS STATE

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the Study

According to National Population Commission (2012) it is generally believed that Nigeria has a total population of 170 million people, out of this number 67% live in the rural areas while the remaining 34% live in the urban centres. Nigeria is a country in Africa continent located in West of Africa close to the equator extending from latitude 4˚N to14˚ and from longitude 3˚E to 15˚E. Except for the Atlantic ocean to the south, Nigeria is surrounded by French-speaking countries; Niger, Cameroun and Benin Republic. Nigeria is a third world country which means it is a developing country. However, the fact that most of the population reside in the rural areas indicate that rural areas need more of infrastructural development such as good roads, electricity, good and well equipped schools for the growth and betterment of the people living in the rural areas. But in Nigeria, the reverse is the case. More attention is given to the urban centre for the detriment of the rural areas, as a result of the notion that urban centre are more populated; so they need more basic infrastructure than the rural areas. This perception has caused imbalance between the urban centre and the rural dwellers by creating a wide gap.

By this gap the urban centre are growing immensely living the rural areas in a state of stagnation and depreciation which is growing at an alarming rate. In the case of Mushin Local Government Area of Lagos State being one of the local governments with a population of about 1.6 million people in which 74% of them living in the rural areas lack basic infrastructure for growth and development. Moreover, it is generally agreed that education has impact more substantially in rural area development process in developing nations. Therefore, education has a controlling influence over the development of rural societies, communities, individual or group of individuals and families which leads to the reduction of low income rate, poverty and rural-urban migration. Although, education has made a significant impact on rural areas in terms of marking personnel maintenance, system of supplying farm production, health care and good governance, but failure of government to tackle rural development and recognition of the importance of rural areas and rural people to the economic development still remains an issue.

The major aim of education is learning which is achieved through the teaching and learning process. According to Plato (437-337 BC) “Aesthetic education brings grace to the body and nobility to the mind. Until man in his physical and sensuous mode of being has been accustomed to the laws of beauty, he is not capable of spiritual liberty”. Therefore education would be incomplete without due consideration being given to rural areas. Education holds a significant place in this regard, so far as it forms a very convenient and powerful medium for individuals express themselves in a variety of ways in any situation including his mental skill in relation to overall academic performance. However, it is sad to note that some schools in rural areas have no rooms allocated for teaching even some with class rooms lack furniture; in some schools, teaching is carried on in makeshi classrooms and this can be uninspiring and boring. Inadequate and half-baked teachers in some secondary schools are also an issue of concern in this study (Madeki S.J (2008)). Education impacts social change, by improving individual social position as well as standard of living. Education also increases critical ability of rural people to diagnose their needs, assert their right, taking greater control of decision aecting their lives. Education has the potential to respond to the transformation of rural areas, increase labour force and enhancing security. As the pivot of the educational system, the National policy on Education (FRN, 1981) noted that teachers in all educational institutions including the universities, should be professionally trained because is considered as a tool to be used for the integration of the individuals into the society to achieve self-realization, develop national consciousness, promote unity and strive for social-economic, political, scientific, cultural and technological progress.

Durojaiye (1996) indicates three aspects that are of immediate relevance to education: 1. The learner, his growth and development, his needs and motivation, his individual characteristics and achievement, his nutritional state and the child-rearing approached employed by his parents. 2. The learning situation, the school and wider society, the cultural context and eects on learning. 3. The learning process and the teacher who makes them happen including his method, approaches and personality. Education has brought about phenomenal changes in every aspect of human’s life. Brown (2011) opines that education is a process which brings about changes in the behaviour of the society. It enables every individual to eiciently and eectively participate in societal activities and make a positive contribution to the progress of the society. Education create awareness in the rural areas regarding their right to education as stipulated in Article 26 of the United Nation Declaration of Human Right (1984) which says that: 1. Everyone has the right to education. 2. Education shall be free at least in elementary and fundamental stages 3. Primary education shall be compulsory 4. Education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all in the basis of merit. The concentration of education in urban centres rather than rural areas has done more harm than good; it accelerates rural-urban migration, generating youth unemployment. This makes rural areas undergrowth or underdeveloped.

Education enhances the capacity of people, expanding the area of competence and changes orientation and attitude which significantly improve the life style of people both in rural areas and urban centers. According to World Bank (2002) Education policy and programme must be carefully designed at both national and local levels. Impact of education in area of health is indisputable especially in area of mortality rate. However, in other to lower Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) and achieve the lowest possible Total Fertility Rate (TFR) in rural areas education has a crucial role to play in girls that dwell in the rural areas, better education of a female child or pass through a process of learning can drastically reduce maternal and infant mortality; it will also bring about positive impact for family health, birth spacing, few children and fertility related issues, better care of children, seeking right services and counsel at the right point in time and the right places, and promote health and survival and life expectancy along with economic productivity for a better standard of living. Education can initiate social change by transforming the out look and attitude of man; it can also bring about a change in the pattern of social relationship and thereby causing social change. This social change can be good behaviour, respect to elders, obeying one’s culture and all these have been the impact of education in rural development process. Be that as it may, education in Nigeria is now more of a private enterprise, but a huge government venture that has witnessed a progressive evolution of government complete and dynamic intervention and active participation. The federal government of Nigeria has adopted education as an instrument par-excellent for effecting national development.

IMPACT OF EDUCATION IN RURAL DEVELOPMENT PROCESS A CASE STUDY OF MUSHIN LGA, LAGOS STATE