1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Learning has been so much associated with the school that some people almost think that learning goes on only in schools. This view of learning has been greatly reinforced by such reference to schools as institutions of learning and to Universities, Polytechnics and College of Education as institutions of higher learning (Okoye, 2011). There is no doubting the fact that much learning goes on in school. The school is particularly and specifically arranged so as to facilitate effective learning. Unfortunately the poor condition of our schools, particularly the secondary schools today in the nation raises a lot of anxiety. A cursory look at these school in spite of government efforts reveals schools dominated by dilapidated buildings, school void of good furniture and equipment, schools where instructional materials are either not provided or are inadequate; school that are under-staffed; schools, where teachers’ salaries and allowances are not promptly paid, schools that have not been inspected for the last 15 years; schools where there are no discipline among other things. The government, and especially the parents are very much concerned with the quality and volume of learning acquired by their children, wards and citizens as this is related to the quality and quantity of the contribution which the individual can make to his immediate family, community and the nation as a whole. (Thorndike, 2009). Several studies by Sociologist, Psychologists and Educationists showed that the type of schools a learner attends has profound influence on his academic achievement. For instance, Bibby and Peil (2009) noted that children who attended private secondary schools performed better than students in public schools. This view is also supported by Lioyd (2006) as he contended further that the public schools which saw education as good thing, tended to leave the question of educational success or failure in the hands of the public and their parents. This implies that the business of education is not taken with all the seriousness it demands in the public schools. This of course is what may be regarded as the general apathy of the citizenry to government’s owned business or property. A situation that has resulted in lackadaisical attitude of government’s workers, including teachers in the public schools tend to believe that an intelligent child would succeed automatically at school without any active assistance coming from them.
The overall objective in every teaching –learning interaction as usually required is to bring about harmonious development of the individual and acquisition of the desired knowledge, values and skills to enable him/her function in a particular way. The process of teaching needs to be supervised for effective teaching- learning process. The syllabus and curriculum system must be given special care and consideration so as to achieve the desired objectives. Thus, when curriculum system is ensured in every school, there will be positive developments that will bring permanent change in the behavior of the learner signifying that learning has taken place. However, human societies differ in the way they teach their children values, norms and skills, while others impart skills in formal way, through organized system, that is a well-recognized system approved by the ministry of education. Others prefer more traditional ways in inculcating such desired values, notwithstanding the particular society in which learning takes place, and methodology used, a number of variables interact together to bring about a stable and permanent changes in behavior. Of teaching and learning are hampered. Consequently, besides the two important variables mentioned in teaching learning process, the environment in which learning takes place has to be conducive for learning. In formal learning, schools are not just a place to learn, to read and write but also receive complete education. Therefore, schools have to provide suitable environment for effective and proper development of the learner so as to acquire the desired skills, but where the school environment is deficient or lacking in the materials required for effective learning, the designed objectives could not be achieved.
In a related study carried out also in the U.S. by Braun, Jenkins and Grigg (2006), they compared the performance of students in private and public schools in both reading and mathematics involving grades 4 and 8, results showed that the private schools performed better than the public schools not only in reading and mathematics, but also in the two grades (4th & 8th) involved in the study. Overall, findings indicated that the average private school mean score was higher than the average public school mean score, and that the difference was statistically significant. However, in the study comparing students’ academic performance in business studies in public and private Junior Secondary School Certificate Examinations (JSSCE) in Ovia South West Local Government Council Area of Edo State, Nigeria, conducted by Igbinedion and Epumepu (2011), it was revealed that there was significant difference in the academic performance in business studies between the public and private schools from 2008 to 2011. Results further showed that the percentage performance trend of public schools were higher than those of the private both males and females. Consequent upon the discussion above, more parents and guardians who can afford it are daily withdrawing their children and wards from the public schools to the private fee-paying secondary schools despite its expensive nature even in this hard time. Many of the private schools are growing bigger and fatter at the expense of the public ones whose enrolment is daily dwindling. It is in this context that this study is set out to compare students’ academic performance between the private and public schools in Akure East and West Local Government Council Areas of Ondo State, Nigeria.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
It is important to note that meaningful conclusions cannot be attained in every work without a defined focus. Thus, the researcher intends to find out the problems militating against effective teaching and learning of social studies in public and private schools in three different educational zones. Some of the problems are: the roles of teachers, the environment in which learning takes place, lack of supervision, lack of adequate teaching-learning materials, instructional school facilities and lack of qualified teachers. However, there has been tremendous development in the educational sector of the state. New public and private schools have been established to meet the educational demand of its citizenry (1st Ondo State Education Summit, 2004). The researcher observed that there is unimpressive performance of students in secondary school, the researcher therefore embarked on this study to find out whether there is actually any performance difference in academic performance of students in public and private school students
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The main objective of this study is to compare the academic performance of private secondary school and public secondary school in Ikeja local government area, Lagos state. Specifically the study intends to:
1. Find out the level of students failure in both public and private secondary school
2. Find out the factors that influence the performance of secondary school students in public and private school
3. Find out if there is any significant relationship between school environment and the academic performance of both private and public schools student.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The following questions will guide the researcher during the course of the research to achieve the specified objectives above:
1. What is the level of student’s failure in both public and private secondary school?
2. What are the factors that influence the performance of secondary school students in public and private school?
3. Is there any significant relationship between school environment and the academic performance of both private and public schools student?
Ho:there is no significant relationship between school environment and the academic performance of both private and public schools student
H1:there is a significant relationship between school environment and the academic performance of both private and public schools student
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
It is hoped that this study will provide information for parents, educators and school administrators to reflect upon various factors that help students in achieving their academic goals. In so doing, they can investigate the possibility of introducing those factors to their school, which may consequently lead to enhancing students’ educational outcomes in school This study will also be significant because the findings will stimulate parents, school managers, teachers, students and the society’s awareness on the importance of conducive learning environment the findings of the study will also assist school administrators and curriculum planners to develop strategies that would reduce negative effects of poor learning environment on academic achievement of students in primary schools.
The findings of this study shall also be useful to school proprietors, government school administrators and parents in understanding the influence of school environment on academic achievement of students in primary schools. This study will also be of importance to students themselves as it will be made known to them the effects of school environment on their academic achievement. Finally, the findings of the study will act as a reference point to other interested scholars interested in this area of research.
1.7 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This study influence of sex education on the sexual orientation of students initially was aimed to cover at least five local government area in Lagos state but due to time and some other unforeseen constraint, samples was taken only from Ikeja local government area, Lagos state.
1.8 DELIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The major constraint that affected this research is limited time and insufficient fund to finance the project, due to this the research is limited to one local government area.
1.9 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Comparative:measured or judged by estimating the similarity or dissimilarity between one thing and another; relative.
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