The Role Of Science Education Teachers In The Development Of Education In Secondary Schools In Enugu North Local Government Area

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The Role Of Science Education Teachers In The Development Of Education In Secondary Schools In Enugu North Local Government Area


Abstract


This study examined the role of the Science Education Teacher in the development of Education in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State. To guide the study, five research questions were posed. The questions examined the following variables: Does the Science education teacher contribute towards the manpower requirements in the educational sector in Enugu North Local Government? In what extent does the science education teacher reduce the rate of unemployment in Enugu North Local Government? In what extent has the science education teacher in any way assisted in reducing the rate of illiteracy in Enugu North Local Government Area? Does the effort of the science education teacher minimize the rate of school drop-outs in Enugu North Local Government? Does the science education teacher contribute towards the increase of the local government productive capacity in Enugu North? Questionnaires were administered to 120 teachers in the four selected secondary and commercial schools in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State. The data collected through the questionnaire was analyzed using the simple percentage and the results revealed that the science education teacher plays prominent roles in the development of education such as the provision of employment, the provision of literacy, control of school drop outs, and provision of business establishment that are necessary for the increase in the productive capacity of the local government. Finally, based on the findings some recommendations were made and areas for further studies were suggested.


Chapter One


Introduction

Background of the Study

Education is a major tool for national socio-economic development and for individual socio-economic empowerment. The educational system is vital, because it produces the personnel that is required to function in various facets of national life and development process. One world appreciate the enormity of the problem inherent in this development, there are some disciplines that are more suitable for science students and by extension for science teachers. These include practical agricultural science, practical physical education among others.
The area in which any given nation is able to develop both its natural and human resources likely to be dependent on the development of its educational sector, therefore, teachers have significant and important role to play.

The aim of science education teacher is to produce personnel’s equipped with the knowledge of the subject matter and the teaching skills to teach in our school systems. Education being the life wire of any nation for all facets of development cannot be over-emphasized in order to the issue of keep the system quite alive and active. One major way of keeping the system alive is by producing sufficient, efficient and dedicated teachers and develop same in our educational system. The National Policy on Education opened a new page in the development of teacher training programmes in Nigeria. Adeyinka (2004) observed that with the introduction of the 6-3-3-4 education system, there was the need for a new orientation of secondary teachers and students. He stated further that the students were faced with a new curriculum challenge, that of acquiring the basic knowledge, and for the teachers, the skill to teach the new curriculum.

National Policy on Education also states that all teachers in the nation’s educational institutions, from pre-primary to university, would be professionally trained. The implication of this is that more grade II teachers’ colleges and more tertiary institutions would be established for the training of these teachers.

In order to enhance their roles in since education, therefore importance of science and science education to the modern society is obvious since no nation can develop technologically without giving the study of science top priority in her schools. To lay the necessary foundation for industrial and technological progress, Maduabum (1983) pointed out that the younger generation of any nation must be exposed to the knowledge of sciences. With a focus on science education, we attempt to articulate the expert knowledge and skills needed to prepare exemplary science teachers.

According to Oxford advance dictionary, 6th edition described a teacher as a person whose job is teaching, especially in a school. A teacher is said to be a catalyst that plans and executes the learning programme. He/she provides the needed guide in the determination of the appropriate teaching or instructional materials. He/she provides the light, which the learner uses to see. He/she is a great physiology who easily understands the state of the learner and directs the steps of the curriculum implementation. In simple term he is a person who specifically responsible to change the attitudes of the learners. A teacher usually undergoes a professional training in a socialized field of knowledge called education; a teacher contributes significantly in creating effectiveness in the teaching and learning environment. He/she is fondly described as the spark that fixes those development process of man. He/she is a role model and a great aspirator in human learning and other general development of the society. Ahmed (2004) said that “A teacher is a person who had undergone approve professional training in education at appropriate levels capable of imparting knowledge, cultures and skills to the learner. The learners are the persons who seek knowledge from the teacher who always teach them.

What is the role of the science education teacher? To put it simply, the science education teacher must be a catalyst for change. The changes required are conceptual and cultural. The changes must empower individuals to transcend the typically over-learned ways of thinking or non-think about the role of science education, to transform mental models of the roles and goals of students as well as teachers in the learning environment, and to translate new understandings about inquiry and meaningful learning into actual habits of practice.

Science education teacher, therefore must facilitate the cognitive departure by their students (preservice and in-service teachers) from traditional model of teaching and learning of science models that are no longer valid in a society confronted with exponential advancements in information and technology. The science education teacher must also help his/her students to carefully consider what they will value in the learning environment which he hopes to seek to establish as teachers. It must also help the pre-professional and professional teacher understand how a teacher’s personal values affects the type of environment their students, establish in the classroom. For many prospective and practicing science teachers, radically new ways to viewing the teaching and learning of science must be adopted to meet the new demands in science education.

The science education teacher must understand that the process of challenging deeply held on personal mental models and perhaps, their subsequent rejection is extremely difficult. Indeed, a great deal of anxiety can result in a classroom where personal ideas and values are questioned. Thus, it is imperative that the science education teacher establish a learning environment conducive to the safe expression and exploration of idea and thoughts by the individual and the group. In such an environment, learners must engage in inquiry, value thinking, and dedicate themselves to working together as they explore and test their thoughts, ideas and perspectives. The science education teacher must help his/her students realize that such values must extend beyond small environment of learners (e.g. classrooms) i.e. the learning environment we speak of needs to be nested within a broader program, one that also values inquiry and thinking, one that presents a coherent and consistent experience for the learners, and one that seeks to be self-improving through processes of reflection feedback, and critical inquiry. The science education teacher must also help the students understand the role of teacher as leader and professional change agent within the broader school community.

The role, therefore, of the science education teacher is to perturb comfortable, over-learned views about schools and schooling in hope of promoting conceptual changes within individuals, across small communities of learners, and across the boarder community of people contributing to a program of education. This study is therefore, an attempt to find out the role of the science education teacher the development of education in Enugu North Local Government of Enugu State.

Hence in locating the role of the science education teacher in the development of education in Enugu North Local Government Area, we must first assess, evaluate and re-examine the products of science education as a whole. In other words, the role of the science education teacher can be appreciated if we know what contributions science education is making in the nation and in the local government.

Science education is practical in nature and is quite capable of increasing the productive capacity of not only the local government, but also that of the entire state. This can only be possible through the effort of the science education teacher, thus, this study will investigate the role of the science education teacher as it affects the development of education in Enugu North Local Government of Enugu State.


Statement of the Problem

Science and technology have advanced so much that they have opened many new fields of human endeavours. As a result, every sphere of man’s life and activities are being challenged. Hence man is constantly striving to meet up with the challenges thrown to him by these new fields or area in his surroundings. In meeting up with these challenges, man engages himself in different fields of human learning in order to acquire the right knowledge and skills.

Unfortunately science education in Nigeria which stands a better chance of providing the technical know-how with which to face the future boldly and confidently have been undermined, neglected and rejected by many who failed to understand its inputs or roles. As a result, those involved in the teaching of science education are equally looked down upon and not recognized, and their roles seriously questioned. What then is the role or are the roles of science education teacher and how do they contribute to the development of education in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State? The above therefore is the background of the problem to which this study seeks to solve.


Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this researcher work is to find out or investigate the role of science education teachers in the development of education in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State.

  1. To find out whether the contribution of science education teacher towards the manpower requirements in the educational sector in Enugu North Local Government.
  2. To find out whether science education can check or control the role of unemployment in Enugu North Local Government Area.
  3. To find out whether science education can reduce the rate of illiteracy in Enugu North Local Government Area.
  4. To find out whether science education can minimize the rate of school drop-outs in Enugu North Local Government.
  5. To find out whether science education can contribute towards the increase of the local government productive capacity in Enugu North.

Significance of the Study

This study is important because since no nation can develop technologically without giving the study of science top priority in her schools. The younger generation of any nation must be exposed to the knowledge of sciences. It is equally important because it will bring to the fore, the roles of science education teacher and how these roles will help in the development of education in Enugu North Local Government Area.

The study will be useful to the government as it will educate the government that science education is the base for the technological take-off of the country. The study will also enable the government and the individuals to realize the contributions of science education towards the realization of self-reliance which is necessary for the development and growth of both the individual and the nation.


Scope of the Study

The scope of this study is limited to the finding out of the role of the science education teacher in the development of education in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State. Due to limited resources, time factor, and distance, the researcher is restricted to the area of the study to two comprehensive schools and two secondary schools out of a total of thirteen schools in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State.
Thus, restrictions are placed on the generalization of the results or research findings outside this limit.


Research Questions

For the purpose of effective and efficient study, the following research questions served as guides into meaningful discussion:

  1. Does the contributions of science education increasing the manpower requirements in the educational sector in Enugu North Local Government?
  2. In what extent does the science education teacher reduce the rate of unemployment in Enugu North Local Government?
  3. In what extent has the science education teacher in any way assisted in reducing the rate of illiteracy in Enugu North Local Government Area?
  4. What are the efforts of the science education teacher to minimize the rate of school drop-outs in Enugu North Local Government?
  5. How does the science education teacher contribute towards the increase of the local government productive capacity in Enugu North?

Chapter Five


Discussion of Findings, Implication, Conclusion, Recommendations and Summary

This chapter presents the summary of the various findings highlighted in the course of this research. The various data generated have been presented and analyzed in the previous chapter. This section therefore discusses the findings, the implications and suggestions for further studies.


Discussion of Findings

This study tried to examine the role of science education teacher in the development of education in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State. As guides, five research questions were posed. The questions examined the following five variables:

Science education teacher contributed towards the manpower requirements in the educational sector in Enugu North Local Government Area.

Science education teacher also can contribute towards the control of the rate of unemployment in the Local Government. The science education teacher can reduce the number of illiterates in Enugu North Local Government Area. The science education teacher can minimize or control the rate of school drop-outs in Enugu North Local Government Area.

The science education teacher has a role to play towards the increase of the local government productive capacity.
Analysis of the data collected through questionnaires administered to 120 teachers in the four secondary and comprehensive schools selected in Enugu North Local Government Area revealed the following” that the science education teacher indeed contributes towards the manpower requirements in the educational sector in Enugu North Local Government by training the staff needed and by the provision of the skills needed to engage in such sector.

That the science education teacher plays important role in reducing the rate of unemployment in the local government, through training individuals to become self-employed and self-reliant. This has reduced the rate of unemployment in the local government. That the science education teacher has indeed engaged himself in the campaign to reduce or eliminate illiteracy in the local government

That the science education teacher is contributing towards the reduction of school drop-outs in the local government.

That the science education teacher helps the local government to increase her productive capacity.
From the above, we can therefore infer that the role of the science education teacher, in the development of education in Enugu North Local Government Area include:

The provision of manpower requirements: the data collected through the questionnaire reveals that the educational sector in Enugu North Local Government is boosted up by a number of personnel or staff who are graduates of science education. Thus, it can be seen that the science education teacher is responsible for the skills possessed or acquired by the staff who are working to improve education in Enugu North Local Government.

The provision of employment opportunities: The data collected through the questionnaires attest to the claim above. The analysis of the data reveals that the science education teacher is responsible for the reduction of unemployment in the local government. This is quite clear in the responses made by the teachers, and also because science education is concerned with the training of the necessary manpower for industry. As a result, the science education teacher is seen to be responsible for imparting the required skills and knowledge needed to establish any business. Hence graduates of science education create jobs for themselves and others with the appropriate skills acquired for the science education teacher.

Provision of literacy: It was observed from the data collected that a greater number of respondents agreed that the science education teacher has helped in bridging the gap or the void between literacy and illiteracy.

Reduction or control of school drop-outs: Because of the appealing practical skills offered by the science education teacher individuals who have the tendency to drop-out of schools due to disinterestedness, boredom, or inability to cope with the demands of theory-oriented form of education, are now enrolling into science education schools. Hence, the science education provides an environment conducive enough to retain individuals who would ordinarily drop-out of school.

Therefore, the above are the identified roles of the science education teacher in the development of education in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State


Implication of the Findings

Findings from this study have implications for teachers, parents, students and the ministry of education.
The identified roles of the science education teacher have implication for the science education teachers. When science education teachers are out to assist and impart the necessary saleable skills, efforts should be made to identify the need of the individuals and that of the community with regards to making provision for developing education more and more. Again these would challenge the science education teachers to have a focus and equip themselves with all that is required in order to contribute positively and massively towards the development of education in the local government.

Equally the findings have implications for parents. This is because, as earlier pointed out, most parents discourage their children and wards from enrolling into science education schools because they believe that science education is first class course undertaken only by those who have good enough knowledge. The findings of this study have shown that such a conception of science education is quite wrong and misleading. Hence, the findings of this study would correct the erroneous misconception of science education and enable parents to see the noble roles of science education in the country and so encourage their children to embrace it.

The implication of the findings to the students is that they should realize that science education provides the most sort for type of education in our modern times and should not neglect it.

Finally, the findings have implications for the ministry of education in both the local government level and the state level. The ministry of education in both level should try as much as possible to encourage the establishment of science schools as well as enhance and improve the existing ones. This is because science education has suffered so much neglect in the past and a prolonged neglect would seriously continue to impede the rate of development in education.


Recommendations

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

  1. Science education should be given much attention through the provision of funds for the smooth running and effective implementation of its projects and prospects.
  2. Relevant aspects of science education should be incorporated into the mainstream curriculum of all forms of education in the sate.
  3. Science education teachers should be encouraged, commended and compensated by making sure that they are well paid and respected in the community. This would encourage them to put in their very best and also make them to be very dedicated and zealous.

Conclusions

It is now obvious from the results of the findings of this study that the role of the science education teacher is multitude. Although science education has been generally neglected through a misconception of its objectives and importance, yet, its contribution and effects are felt everywhere especially in the development of education. To this effect, the science education teacher is now recognized as a powerful factor in the development of education as well as the development of the economy of the local government through the provision of the required manpower.

Therefore, the five research questions raised at the beginning of this work as guides to a meaningful and effective research work were all answered in the affirmative by a greater majority or percentage of the respondents. This gives us grounds and lends credence to the acceptance of the identified roles of the science education teacher in the development of education in Enugu North Local Government Area.


Suggestions for Further Studies

For further studies or research, the following topics have been suggested.

  1. Factors responsible for the decline of science education in Nigeria: A case study of Enugu State.
  2. The role of science education on the improvement of the economic life of the rural dwellers.

The Role Of Science Education Teachers In The Development Of Education In Secondary Schools In Enugu North Local Government Area


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The Role Of Science Education Teachers In The Development Of Education In Secondary Schools In Enugu North Local Government Area


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