The Standard Of Primary Education And It’s Effect On Educational Development
Education is widely regarded as the route to economic prosperity, the key to scientific and technological advancement, the means to combat unemployment, and the foundation of social equity. Primary education is a foundational level of education that needs to be well funded, controlled and managed. Adequate provisions of education to the citizens contribute greatly to the socioeconomic development of the country. Therefore good administration of primary level of education is required to foster national growth and development.
This fact, the Federal Government of Nigeria like other developing countries has at different times made frantic efforts in increasing the number of children enrolled in primary schools though there are still many more who are not enrolled and who do not complete the programme. This massive expansion has been possible by the infusion of large sums of monetary allocation to primary education.
Although the functionality of this level of education is not doubted, in addition to the structural changes made to improve the system, it has been saddled with problems ranging from issues of enrollment, funding, infrastructure, teaching personnel and curriculum provisions. This paper discusses the functionality of primary education and some of the structural changes made to meet the demands of the society. Furthermore, it highlights the earlier identified issues as they affect primary education delivery in Nigeria.
1.1 Background of the Study
Education as a development agent, is valued by all nations of the world because it has brought total liberation to man. It has transformed man from ignorance and misery to knowledge and happiness. It has made man useful to himself, his generation and beyond. As rightly observed by Umoh (2006), education helps the individual to develop physically, mentally, morally, spiritually, and emotionally by providing suitable environment, teaching him new knowledge, attitudes and skills that will enable him to be useful to himself and his society. Education at this level strengthens the learner’s feet to climb the educational ladder to the zenith of academic attainment if a good foundation is laid. The Federal Republic of Nigeria (2004), states that primary education refers to education given to children aged 6 to 11 plus in primary schools and that the primary level is the key to the success or failure of the whole system since the rest of the education system is built upon it. This statement confirms the fact that the primary level of education is most crucial to the success of other levels, hence the need for the stakeholders to do everything possible to lay a solid foundation for its sustainability.
For primary education to be the bedrock of educational system, Umoh (2006), maintains that it must bring to the learners elementary and general knowledge of science, by teaching them to use and operate scientific objects and gadgets so that they may be conversant with such foundational knowledge as they advance to other levels. In other to give the primary school (education) the focus FRN (2004) enumerated the goals of this level as to:
- Inculcate permanent literacy and numeracy, and ability of communicate effectively;
- Lay a sound basis for scientific and reflective thinking;
- Give citizenship education as a basis for effective participation in and contribution to the life of the society.
- Mould the character and develop sound attitude and morals in the child.
- Develop in the child ability to adapt to the child’s changing environment.
- Give the child opportunities for developing manipulative skills that will enable the child to function effectively in the society within the limits of the child’s capacity.
- Provide the child with basic tools for further educational advancement, including preparation for trades and craft of the locality.
The lunching of the Universal Basic Education (UBE) programme was the Federal Government effort to salvage the primary education system which is the foundation stone of other educational levels and infact, the corner stone of national development (Okpala, 2007). This confirms the submission by the present authors that primary
education is the foundation for qualitative higher education in Nigeria. This is because it is the primary education graduates that gain admission into secondary education and later proceed to higher education. In this regard, the quality of output from primary education will definitely produce future professionals, such as technologists, engineers, educationists, lawyers, some of whom will become lecturers in higher education to teach students whose educational foundation is from the same primary education system. The term “qualitative” is used to portray the expected better output from higher education based on the desired good foundation laid at the primary education level. As pointed out by Ijeoma (2004), Adedeji (2004), Onyeagba (2006), Saidu (2008), and Sen (2010), primary education is the foundation for a child’s learning on which every other level of learning depends. In the light of these objectives, this paper examines how the primary school may be seen and rightly recognized as foundation of education in the society. Furthermore, Olaniyan & Obadara (2008), submit that apart from the home as the
first agent of socialization, primary school is the first that introduces formal education or literacy to the children. In other words, primary school education is a foundation upon which all other levels of education are built. Armstrong (2008) affirms that certainly, primary and secondary educations are both important elements of the sector, not least because they feed directly the quality of higher levels of education.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Education in Nigeria is faced with myriad of challenges, these, includes, poor funding, poor educational infrastructure, inadequate classrooms, teaching aids, like projectors, computers, laboratory and even library. pausity of quality teachers and poor polluted learning environment. In addition to these inadequacies, our school system is plagued with so many social vices, such as cultism, examination malpractice, hooliganism, bullying, and lack of concentration or poor learning. For meaningful development to take place in the primary schools the Nigerian government needs to re address the issue of funding, private educational investors, parents, teachers and pupils needs a reorientation towards achieving the goal of a standard primary education. A lot of factors can be assumed to be the reason why the standard of primary school education is very low in Nigeria and why development is not rapid. All these and more will be discussed in the study
1.3 Research Question
The following questions have been prepared for the study
- Is there a current standard of primary education in Nigeria?
- Are there effect of the standard of primary education on the development of education in Nigeria?
- Are there government intervention in the development of primary school education?
- Can primary school education in Nigeria can be improved upon?
1.4 Objective of the Study
The primary objective of the study is as follows
- To find out the current standard of primary education in Nigeria
- To examine the effect of the standard of primary education on the development of education in Nigeria
- To examine if there is government intervention in the development of primary school education
- To find out how primary school education can be improved upon
1.5 Statement of Hypothesis
The following hypothesis have been formulated for the study
H01: there is no government intervention in the development of primary school education in Nigeria
H02: there is no effect of the standard of primary education on the development of education in Nigeria?
1.6 Significance of the Study
The significance of this study cannot be underestimated as:
- This study will examine the standard of primary education and its effect on educational development
- The findings of this research work will undoubtedly provide the much needed information to government organizations, public and private primary schools, and academia.
1.7 Scope and Limitation of the Study
This study will examine the standard of primary education and its effect on educational development. Hence will be delimited to selected primary schools in Ethiope east of Delta state.
1.8 Definition of Terms
Provides learning and educational activities typically designed to provide students with fundamental skills in reading, and writing
The process of developing or being developed.
Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation
In this study, our focus was to examine the standard of primary education and its effect on educational development using selected primary schools in Ethiope east as a case study. The study specifically was aimed at highlighting the current standard of primary education in Nigeria. effect of the standard of primary education on the development of education in Nigeria. if there is government intervention in the development of primary school education. how primary school education can be improved upon.
The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 77 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent are drawn from staff of the selected primary schools
Based on the finding of this study, the following conclusions were made:
- There is a current standard of primary education in Nigeria
- There are effect of the standard of primary education on the development of education in Nigeria
- There are government intervention in the development of primary school education
- Primary school education in Nigeria can be improved upon
Based on the responses obtained, the researcher proffers the following recommendations:
- Non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) and government need to sponsor enlightenment programmes to educate the parents on the relevance of primary education to the child and societal development and explain the dangers of using the child as an economic tool as well as the need to provide the enabling environment that will enable the child acquire primary education;
- That the development of primary education should be prioritize in other for the primary school pupils to reach their full potential
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