THE EFFECT OF SCHOOL STRUCTURE AND ENVIRONMENT ON THE PERFORMANCE OF SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENT

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CHAPTER ONE

1.0 INTRODUCTION

1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY

The school is a social and learning agent that provides the environment upon which a child may be formally educated in order to attain educational goals. Human beings, have unlimited capacity to learn, but might however be limited by the behavior patterns and facilities that the immediate environment oers. According to Umoh (2006), nature only provides the raw materials in form of potentials, but it is the environment that determines the extent of development. The menace of academic failure among the young school graduates has stared both the government and stakeholders in the face. There is a consensus of opinion about the fallen standard of education as a big problem that is hindering the posterity of the Nigerian nation in terms of quality man power resources. Most students in secondary school experience academic problem that manifests itself in the form of academic poor performance. Many researchers have sought to find out the reasons for the downward trend in the academic performance of secondary school students. Adesehinwa (2013) reported effect of family type and poor funding on students’ academic achievement; Ogbemudia and Aiasa (2013) reported lack of good home foundation for pupils as cause of poor performance by students; Achieng (2012) found home factors, student factors and institutional capacity as the causes while Adesehinwa and Aremu (2010) posited that factors resident in child, family, society, government and the school may be composite causative effects for these downtrend; they, however concluded that there is a need for each of these variables to be considered extensively, hence the focus of this study to critically consider influence of home on academic performance of secondary school students. Other studies showed that the level of family cohesion (Caplan et al, 2002 cited in Diaz, 2004), and family relationships (Buote, 2001) proved themselves capable of predicting performance.

The issue of poor academic performance of students in Nigeria has been of much concern to the government, parents, teachers and even student themselves. The quality of education not only depends on the teachers as reflected in the performance of their duties, but also in the eective coordination of the school variables. It is believed that the school physical features has a form of relationship with the student academic performance in terms of the school size, structure, ownership, location and type. A school with a highly populated students may result in the teachers not been able to monitor the performance of the students and thus reducing the students’ academic performance and also, research has postulated a form of severe relationship between the ownership of school and the students’ academic performance say public school and private school. Also, the location and availability of educational resources at the disposal of the students in terms of school variable aect their level of academic performance.

Environment can be defined as a system within which living organisms interacts with the physical element while education environment is a learning place where the learner learn and interact with learning facilities in order to be socialized and face the challenges in the society. Agusiegbe (2004) sees environments as consisting of all elements existing around man and which exert some influence on him. These include physical, biological and social attributes. Environment can also be seen as aggregate of all the external condition and influence aecting the life and development of an organism. 4 In this study, environment includes all the external condition and influences in the school that aect the academic achievement of the student such as laboratory equipment, library facilities, qualified teachers, furniture, school building, good administrative management, teacher pupil relationship and school location among others. The issue of poor academic performance of students in Nigeria has been of much concern to the government, parents, teachers and even student themselves. The quality of education not only depends on the teachers as reflected in the performance of their duties, but also in the effective coordination of the school environment (Ajao, 2001). Education is an essential factor for effective development of any country like Nigeria. The western education adopted by Nigeria is highly based on individualism, socio-economic and internationalization which are geared towards national development. From the fore going one can see that school environment plays a crucial role in academic achievement of a child. This problem of poor performance is more pronounced in ill-equipped schools hence it becomes necessary to find out the influence of school environment on the academic achievement of students of public secondary schools in Enugu State.

1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

The problem under study has to do with an unsatisfactory condition of the educational system being operated in Nigeria. The establishment of government schools/community schools has resulted in a situation where by some school were favored in terms of the provision of rich environment than others. It has been very difficult if not impossible for government to standardize the school environment. Thus the environment varies from school to school. Some schools have adequate school buildings, good library and suitable textbooks, good administrative management, professionally qualified teachers, good laboratory equipment as well as good location. While in some schools little or none of these exist. It is because of this that Chike-Okoli (1997) in line with Ikediashi (2002) have pointed out that poor teaching experience, inadequate or poor physical infrastructure, unsatisfactory building design are likely to cause some physical discomfort for the students and are therefore bound to influence their academic achievement. The problem of this study put in a question form is: What is the influence of school facilities and equipment on the academic achievement of students of public secondary schools in Enugu State?

THE EFFECT OF SCHOOL STRUCTURE AND ENVIRONMENT ON THE PERFORMANCE OF SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENT