The Effect Of Poverty On Educational Development Of The Citizens

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The Effect Of Poverty On Educational Development Of The Citizens


Poverty has been a serious problem facing all society over the years. This paper critically analyses the conceptual problems associated with poverty over the education of the citizens. It also analyses the causes of poverty and the various programme put in place for poverty alleviation such as family economic advancement. (feap) and poverty alleviation programme (pap) and various forms in which government has interfered. The question is, how far have these programmes served as veritable instrument of poverty alleviation in the country? This paper suggests that even though these measures have not achieved much as poverty alleviation instruments because of their operations deficiencies, they are nonetheless good instruments that could be improved upon. This research also has found out that the increase of the crime wave is as a result of the frustration that the poor get from their deprivation of education by poverty. Workable and feasible solutions have been proffered for the problems on educational sector so that qualitative education of the citizens could be attained.

Chapter One


1.1 Background of the Study

This work is based on the effect of poverty on educational development of the citizens with a particular reference to Federal Polytechnic Oko in Anambra State.

The effect of poverty here is those things that can bring ineffective growth in the educational development of the citizens. It is pertinent to know that poverty in any establishment hampered achievement of its targeted objectives.

Educations of the citizens are faced with numerous problems which in turn affect the growth of such establishment. It is the therefore in the light of the forgoing that aroused my interest to embark on this research study with a view to finding out the effects, causes and suggest possible solutions to the effect of poverty on educational development of the citizens with a particular reference to Federal Polytechnic, Oko students, Anambra state.

Nevertheless, formal education in Nigeria has been as old as the coming of the colonial masters. Its existence is not mysterious. They came in with the intention of extending their superior administration, religion and culture to West African countries and also with the intention of engaging in commercial activities with the inhabitants of those countries. When they came to the shores of these countries e.g Nigeria, they were unfortunately unable to communicate with the people in their language. They devised to teach the people the ways of their life, their language, so some agreed with them and it makes those that agree to be wiser than those that rejected the idea.

Since the formal introduction of education, it has been identified by some beneficiaries that education is a librating force, librating people from the crunches of illiteracy, superstition, inferiority complex and other barbaric actions. But inspite of all these advantages bequeathed to us by education, it has been infested and confronted with so many problems which among them include poverty.

Poverty has completely crippled the development of education in Nigeria. Right from time when education was formally established in the country with the imposition of some little amount of money on each student, many people who would have become the ambassadors and policy makers of this our country could not afford to pay such money then and it has absolutely jeopardized their future. The education at that time was left for few who were privileged to be born into royal family who were engaged in shabby business of slave trade or the family of wealthy farmers who supplies the European traders the raw materials they were looking for.

Furthermore, the government later identified that it has a very big role to play about the education of its citizens. It was observed that the richness and greatness of country depend on the qualitative and quantitative education given to the citizens. Now, the government has been turned out to be an obstacle to education by one allotting a reasonable percentage of its revenue to the education of the citizens. The international communities have considered the plight of the citizens of the developing countries on their educational development and the difficulties poverty has posed on it. This can be manifestly seen through the activities of the UNICEF, an organ of the world body U.N.O. This therefore, examined the effect on poverty educational development of the Nigeria citizens. Using Federal Polytechnic Oko student as a case study.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

The yardstick to measure the extent of the educational development of the citizen depends on the reasoning ability of the people. The behaviour, the approach to solving problems and the physical appearance of the citizens. It is obvious that education is very essential especially now that almost everybody wants to be educated and enlightened. Many people want to be literate so as to be able to be informed because he who is not informed is definitely deformed and he who is deformed is abnormal.

What motivates the researcher to write on this topic is that, poverty as a problem does not go alone. It goes with numerous problems that could be completely inextricable from it. It drags some other problems along such as malnutrition, low standard of living, shabby and tattered dresses.

Furthermore, with the observation of this problem, Baba Danjuma (2002) viewed that “the pauper lacks the resources to send his child to school. And even in communities where education is free, the pauper child still faces an uphill task because the hunger of the body impedes the proper nourishment of the mind”. From the above explanation, it could be seen that poverty hinders the proper growth and development of children intellectually, educationally, psychologically and otherwise.

Persons who have low per capital income will have their educational development impaired as they cannot have access to those things that make life worth a living. This study delved into how poverty affects educational development of the Nigerian citizen with a view to finding solution to it

1.3 Purpose of the Study

The primary objective of this work is to expose the threats and hindrances that poverty has posed on education development of the citizens.

  1. To evaluate whether poverty is a condition that is desirable or undesirable and criteria for measuring poverty.
  2. To ascertain whether the effect of poverty on educational development is a seasonal or permanent experience. Also to determine if the existence of poverty is caused by the citizens or the government or by both or either of them.
  3. Also, to determine and suggest how best to eradicate poverty and improved the standard of education acquisition among the citizen.
  4. Finally, to let the citizens understand the importance of education in their lives despite the financial constraints.

1.4 Significance of the Study

This research work is significant in the sense that it has exposed the needs for poverty alleviation in the country as it has to do with the life wire of the society and create better awareness about the threats poverty has posed on our education.

Moreover, this work will help us to study how our country’s development policy can help to reduce the effect of poverty and subsequently improved the educational development of the citizens thereby eliminating the permanent or seasonal occurrence of poverty in the midst of its inhabitants. The knowledge gained in this study will help us to know the extent of the damage poverty caused educational development and ways through which the anomaly can be ameliorated.

At the end of the findings of this work, the government should be made to know that it has a role to play in the abridgement of the income inequality between the rich and the poor so that the latter could afford the training expenses of their wards.

1.5 Research Questions

This study shall carry out on the following research questions.

  1. How does poverty affect the performance level of Federal Polytechnic Oko student?
  2. What do the citizens do when they do not have access to education as a result of poverty?
  3. Has the Federal Government or international organization helped in reducing poverty and improving the state of education of the poor?

1.6 Research Hypotheses

  1. H0: the socio-economic class of a given family does not influence the general educational development of a child
    H1: the socio-economic class of a given family influence the general educational development of a child
  2. H0: the sex of a child determine the educational development and achievement of such child.
    H2: the sex of a child does not determine the educational development and achievement of such child.

1.7 Scope and Limitation of the Study

As a result of the plethora of problems infesting this study, the researcher has decided to concentrate only on the effect of poverty on educational development of F.P.O student. It is pertinent to note that poverty affects other facts of human life but for the purpose of this study, the focus is on educational development.. However the research has some constraints which are;


The time at the disposal of the researcher which is allocated for the study was a major limitation as the researcher has to combine other academic work with the study.


The finance at the disposal of the researcher in the course of the study does not allow for wider coverage as resources are very limited as the researcher has other academic bills to cover.

1.8 Definition of Terms

F.P.O Federal Polytechnic, Oko.

This is the institution where the researcher carried out her work.

Per Capital Income:

This is the income which every individual is supposed to earn in a country. It is calculated by dividing the value of the National Income with the total number of people (population) in a country.


This is the money one earns or get from the work he/she did or from investment one make.


United Nations Children Fund.


United Nations Organization. A group made up of the rich and developed countries and some developing countries. It is established to take care of the world’s political and economic problems.


This is a state of having far less limited resources against numerous wants, where a person is incapable to providing all his basic necessities of life like food, clothes and shelter.

Educational Development:

Educational development is a growing and vibrant field, defined as: “helping colleges and universities function effectively as teaching and learning communities” (Felten, Kalish, Pingree, & Plank, 2007, p. 93)

1.9 Organization of the Study

This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows.

  1. Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (background of the study), statement of the problem, objectives of the study, research questions, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope of the study etc.
  2. Chapter two being the review of the related literature presents the theoretical framework, conceptual framework and other areas concerning the subject matter.
  3. Chapter three is a research methodology covers deals on the research design and methods adopted in the study.
  4. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
  5. Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.

Chapter Five

Summary Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Introduction

It is pertinent to note that this research was aimed at assessing the impacts of family background on educational growth, thus the topic “the effect of poverty on educational development to citizens”.

In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing the challenges associated with educational development to citizens in Nigeria.

5.2 Summary

Poverty eradication requires a life-cycle approach that begins during the early years before formal schooling to ensure school readiness, involves the family and other proximal contexts, and focuses on the indirect processes linking poverty to child development and educational outcomes. The findings of this study show that, there is a relationshipbetween poverty and education in Nigeria. From theanalysis, there is a poor accessibility of education inNigeria. Some parents are unable to send their children toschools because of their low income while some parentscan only send their children to public schools because thatis what they can afford.Furthermore, the findings also show that, public schools in Nigeria seemed to be abandoned by the government. Notmuch is invested on education in Nigeria. Salaries areinadequate for teachers to live on. Public schools are notmeeting parents’ expectations of providing qualityeducation for their children.

In addition, basic needs are hard for some parentsespecially when hunger strikes deeply, penetrating intopeoples’ lives. The compelling questions are: how caneducation take place when there is hunger? And how canthe children learn when their stomachs are empty? How canthe parents send their children to school when they aresinking in poverty? Private schools which are wellequipped in terms of resources, facilities and materials arebeyond their reach. This seemed to cause abig gap betweenthe rich and poor and quality education.

5.3 Conclusion

The conclusion which can be drawn based on the interviews conducted is that poverty has caused tremendous damage to people’s lives in Nigeria and has deprived people of the basic needs. Poverty strikes hard and determines people’s faith in Nigeria and dictates the kind of life people should live. The Nigerian government has failed its citizens by not providing them a good life and sufficient jobs for their survival.

In addition, the Nigerian government is overwhelmed with corruption and corruption is the root of the disease in that country. It is corruption of the government that has started everything. It is corruption that creates poverty due to the poor or unequal distribution of the wealth and equity of the nation. Corruption has sunk the entire system in Nigeria into the Dead Sea where it is hard for the system to be live.

Government offices, sectors, departments and ministries are mummified by corruption. Nigeria has become a country where corruption and bribery are the national pride. Bribes are honoured publicly and become express methods of getting things done in Nigeria and ensuring approval.

In terms of education, a relationship was found between poverty and education in the sense that poverty, again, determines what level of education people should have in

Nigeria. Poverty has crippled our educational system.Schools are a shadow of what they were in the old days.
Public schools and higher institutions in the country are neglected, have poor equipment, and lack facilities and resources. The government has failed to provide good teaching and learning facilities for schools for children to learn.

5.4 Recommendations

Haven completed the study, the researcher recommend that the government should endeavor to eliminate income inequality in Nigeria, and that federal and state policies have arguably been less successful at curbing income inequality than policies in other developed nations. Since the “Great Recession” officially ended in 2009, the average net wealth of the wealthiest seven percent of households rose by 28 percent, while the average wealth of the lowerwealth 93 percent of households dropped by 4 percent (Fry & Taylor, 2013). Further, the political balance and distribution of government benefits continues to shift in favor of the elderly to the disadvantage of children this should be address. Total federal and state spending per capita is highest for children age 6–11 and next-highest for those age 12–18. Three- to 5-year-olds are in third place, and our youngest children (under age 2) get the least support (Edelstein, Isaacs, Hahn, & Toran, 2012). The confluence of these forces results in a growing gap in educational opportunity, largely influenced by gaps in income.

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