Influence Of Covid-19 Pandemic On Students Academic Engagement In Anambra State

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Influence Of Covid-19 Pandemic On Students Academic Engagement In Anambra State


Abstract


Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) outbreak poses serious concerns to global education systems. Efforts to contain COVID-19 prompted unscheduled closure of schools in more than 100 countries worldwide. COVID-19 school closures left over one billion learners out of school. The study investigates the impact of COVID-19 on academic performance. Data were collected through structured questionnaires administered to 200 respondents that consist of teachers, students, parents, and policy makers selected from classes. The collected data were analyzed using STATA/Regression. The results show that COVID-19 has adverse effects on education including, learning disruptions, and decreased access to education and research facilities, Job losses and increased student debts. The findings also show that many educators and students relied on technology to ensure continued learning online during the Coronavirus pandemic. However, online education was hindered by poor infrastructures including, network, power, inaccessibility and unavailability issues and poor digital skills. The study underscores the damaging effects of COVID-19 on education sector and the need for all educational institutions, educators, and learners to adopt technology, and improve their digital skills in line with the emerging global trends and realities in education.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background to the Study

The recent outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic increased the gaps in the education sector globally. Though, the Coronavirus pandemic is novel, but it already has noxious effects on humanity. COVID-19 outbreak has created educational disruptions, and global health concerns that proved very difficult to manage by global health systems. As at now, no nation or race across the world is immune from the coronavirus pandemic, and the entire world seems overwhelmed by the speed of the spread and the devastating effects of COVID-19. The coronavirus pandemic has no boundaries, and the effect is large and fast. Just within few months of the outbreak of the disease, it has drastically changed the lifestyles of the entire world with billions of people being forced to ‘stay at home’, ‘observe self-isolations’, and work and learn from home. It has limited the freedom of people to move, trade or associate. Not only has COVID-19 caused a total lockdown in many countries across the world, but it also caused the death of thousands of people including, women, and the elderly. It was more worrisome to know that reports from various continents, including, America, Africa, Asia, and Europe indicated a daily increase in the number of new cases, and mortality due to COVID-19. As at April, 2020, the number of global COVID-19 cases has surpassed one million cases and more than 220 thousand deaths. It was also frightening that the USA recorded more than 2000 COVID-19 deaths in a single day despite the country’s strong commitment to the fight against the contagion. The number of Coronavirus deaths was soaring with no immediate solutions in sight. The disease showed no sign of slowing down across the globe. The COVID-19 outbreak triggered the President of the United States, President Trump to invoke the “Defense Production Act”. The government also issued a national emergency as a result of the growing number of new cases of Coronavirus in the country (Priscillia, 2020). The U.S government also negotiated with the parliament to approve more than 2 trillion US dollars stimulus package to combat the Coronavirus pandemic, and to provide some reliefs to citizens and businesses affected by the Coronavirus outbreak. Similar actions were also replicated in many other countries including, Germany where 810 billion US dollars were also set aside to contain the effects of the pandemic, yet the virus rapidly spread to many parts of the world.

The outbreak of COVID-19 affected all aspects of human activities globally ranging from education, research, sports, entertainment, transportation, worship, social gathering/interactions, economy, businesses, and politics. Indeed, the entire world was in distress as a result of COVID-19 threats, the reality of the situation was challenging to bear, and the education sector remains one of the worst-hit by Coronavirus outbreak.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

The institution closures are impacting not only the students, teachers, and families, but have far-reaching economic and societal consequences. In response to school closures, UNESCO recommended the use of distance learning programs and open educational applications and platforms that schools and teachers can use to reach learners remotely and limit the disruption of education.

According to UNESCO monitoring as of 7th July 2020, approximately 1,067,590,512 learners have been affected due to school closures in response to the pandemic, 110 countries have implemented nationwide closures, impacting about 61% of the world’s student population. Several other countries have implemented localized closures impacting millions of additional learners. Solely in Nepal, about eighty- seven lakh students ranging from preprimary to tertiary education level [ISCED levels 0 to 8] are affected due to COVID-19 pandemic closure. While it is difficult to predict how the pandemic will unfurl, the possibility of extended restrictions on physical distancing exists.

The United Nations had reported that 166 countries closed schools and universities to limit the spread of the coronavirus which affected about One and a half billion children and young people, representing 87 percent of the enrolled population.

In Southeast Asia like in many other developing regions, a large segment of the population doesn’t have access to the Internet and electronic devices. And even people with access to the Internet experience some infrastructural divide. The infrastructural gap can be seen through several circumstances, including the discrepancy of Internet speeds in different regions. People in the city centers often enjoy significantly faster Internet compared to those living in less developed areas.

According to reports, total of 821,249 subscribers are using the internet in Nigeria in 2019. The country has a population of 29,086,128 as of 2020, based on World meter which depicts that not all students have access to high-speed internet. Even those with high bandwidth internet have found that service is getting interrupted or slowing down due to high collective consumption as more people are using the internet to work, socialize and entertain themselves during the lockdown. While data packages on mobile networks are relatively faster, they are also far more expensive for students to afford on a regular basis.


1.3 Purpose of the Study

To find out the effect of unemployment on youth involvement in kidnapping in Nigeria.


1.4 Objectives of the Study

The study aimed at investigating the impact of COVID 19 on student’s academic engagement.

  1. To examine the impact of COVID-19 on education.
  2. To investigated the various challenges that hinder continued/online education during the COVID-19 lockdown
  3. To ascertain the major ways in which the coronavirus pandemic outbreak affects girl child education in Nigeria
  4. To examine the impact of coronavirus pandemic outbreak on the students’ academic performance

1.5 Significance of the Study

The COVID-19 virus affects different people in different ways. COVID-19 is a respiratory disease and most infected people will develop mild to moderate symptoms and recover without requiring special treatment. People who have underlying medical conditions and those over 60 years old have a higher risk of developing severe disease and death.

This study will impact the knowledge on the teachers’ perception of the impact of corona virus on students learning and performance.


1.6 Research Question

To achieve this, the research was guided by four main research questions as follow:

  1. What is the impact of COVID-19 on education?
  2. What are the various challenges that hinder continued/online education during the COVID-19 lockdown?
  3. In which major ways did the coronavirus pandemic outbreak affect girl child education in Nigeria?
  4. What are the perceptions of teachers on the impact of coronavirus pandemic outbreak on the students’ academic performance?

1.7 Scope / Limitation of the Study

The study covers secondary schools in Anambra State, although rural communities were randomly selected as areas of study. Thematically, the study is restricted to teachers’ perception on pandemic and its impact on the students’ academic performance in secondary schools and environmental health behavior of rural inhabitants in AMAC education zone.


1.8 Organization of the Study

This paper is arranged in a way which sequentially answers the questions raised under the introductory part. Thus there would be five chapters in which Chapter One deals with introductory aspects namely, background of the study area, Objectives of the study Statement of the problem, Significance of the study, scope of the study and limitations throughout this paper. Chapter two would be dedicated to the review of related literature consisting scientific review and empirical review. Chapter three covers the methods used during data collection and data analysis. Chapter four includes finding and discussion part of the study. The last chapter incorporated the conclusion and recommendation part of the research.


Chapter Five


Conclusion and Recommendation

The study establishes that the Coronavirus pandemic has adverse effects on academic engagement of students. COVID-19 has major effects on school characteristics, including research, academic programmes, Staff professional development and jobs in the academic sector etc. These effects were felt by both educational institutions, educators, students and parents and other stakeholders in education. The study emphasizes the need for adoption of technology in education, as a way to curb the effects of Coronavirus and other future pandemics in education. Thus, the study acknowledges that the decision to shut down schools for Coronavirus across the world may be hurtful, but it is sensible considering the rate of spread, and the dangers imposed by COVID-19 pandemic. The unprecedented school closures for Coronavirus remains a lesson and a warning to the entire educational world particularly those who are yet to embrace or adopt emerging learning technologies that support online or remote education. Stakeholders in the education sector have to develop robust strategies to deal with post-Coronavirus era.


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