Full Project – THE INFLUENCE OF PARENT – TEACHERS ASSOCIATION IN EARLY CHILDHOOD LEARNING IN FCT ABUJA
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1.1 Background to the Study
Early childhood education, also known as nursery education, is a branch of education theory that relates to the teaching of children from birth up to the age of eight. Traditionally, this is up to the equivalent of third grade. ECE is described as an important period in child development.
Education in the life of any nation has always been widely recognized because of its importance not only by educators but by policy makers themselves. Indeed, this is so in most cases because education is regarded as the most important instrument of socialization and reform, a belief that date back for more than 2000 years starting with Greeks who recognized education as a means of laying foundation for strong nation (Abiodun-Oyebanji, 2004).
Parent Teacher Association (PTA) is a voluntary association of parents and teachers in a particular school established for its development. This concept of internal grouping arrangement tends to facilitate good school – community relationship. In this perspective, obeying the principles of good school – community relationship, parents are opportune to understand what exist in school their wards attend and the constraints school experienced in course of carrying out the administrative and instructional functions (Abdullahi, 1996).
In Nigeria, PTA is backed by law in some states making it compulsory for parents and teachers; while in other states it is voluntary. Whichever way, parents mandatorily pay levies agreed by the association for their wards attendance in that particular school (Adedeji, 1998). Based on this practice, Adesina (1984) noted that in public schools it is not well practiced and needs to be discouraged especially where PTA arrogates themselves powers meant for Board of Governors, usually appointed by the ministry of education to facilitate school governance. This assertion obviously portrays what is tenable in contemporary struggling societies where education is corruptly managed under the disguise of dwindling economy. This postulation provided impeccable background for condemnation of PTA being an important avenue for school financing.
Aghenta (1984) opined that parent teacher association is democratic organization which attempts to bring parents and teachers together in the interest of the child. It is a formal link of communication on school matters between the teachers and parents. According to Ajayi (1999) the meeting of this body serves as a forum for the exchange of ideas between teachers and parents about school programmes towards the smooth running of the school and the achievements of the goals of the school.
Ajayi and Ekundayo (2010) submitted that most Nigerian communities make financial contributions through the PTA levy and personal donations for the support of the schools in the communities. The author also submitted that communities participate in school administration by electing their members to the Board of Governors. In another dimension, Akintelure (2007) also posited that the PTA enhance understanding and good rapport between the teachers and parents; lobby government for support in the schools; and curtail crises that often arise in the schools.
Ayodele (2002) also agreed that the PTA assists in improving the enrolment of the schools in their communities; helps in maintaining disciplines in the schools; ensure smooth co-existence, understanding and cooperation between the school and the community. Adewumi in Ayodele (2002) also submitted that the PTA helps in sensitization and mobilisation of parents on enrolment attendance and retention of their children or wards in schools. Besides, Abdullahi (1996) also reported that the PTA complements governments’ efforts in the provision and maintenance of infrastructures in the schools.
Parent-teacher associations (PTAs) play an integral role in how schools function. PTAs are local and national organizations of parents and teachers working together to improve the quality of education in American schools from a grass-roots approach. Such organizations play many roles, including involving parents in classroom decisions, promoting communications, events and fundraisers and even lobbying state and national legislatures on behalf of their pupils (Hicks, 1992).
Quality education focus on learning which strengthen the capacities of pupils to act progressively on their own behalf through the acquisition of relevant knowledge, useful and appropriate attitudes, and which creates for pupils and help them create themselves and others, place of safety, security and healthy interaction.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The quality of education in secondary schools could be hampered where the PTA is not performing its roles as expected. A careful examination of the secondary school system in Nigeria suggests that there are some problems bedeviling the PTA which have been hindering effective and smooth relationship between the association and the schools. Some of these are examined as follows:
Inadequate funding is a major problem facing the educational institutions in Nigeria from the primary level to the university level. The success of any secondary school system depends on the amount of resources available to it. Money is an input of any educational system that provides the essential purchasing power with which the system acquires its human and physical inputs.
The major problem that compounds schools’ financial inadequacy is irregular payment of school fees and PTA levy; and inadequate financial support of the PTA. It is believed that money generated through this medium would help complement governments’ effort in the provision of fund for secondary schools.
The challenges of physical and instructional facilities seem to hinder effective performance of the schools. Efficient and effective running of schools to achieve pre-determined goals can hardly be without sufficient facilities to aid teaching and learning. Meanwhile, the state of inadequacy of facilities in most secondary schools in Nigeria is a manifestation of poor funding of the system.
It has been observed that some school principals do not involve the parents in administration of the schools for the fear of being criticized. Most parents would like to play a more active role in their children progress in schools and decision making about school programmers but school administrators/ principals and teachers exhibit a great reluctance to encourage parents to become partners in governance. The non-involvement of parents in school governance, most often than not, results in lack of cooperation between the school and the parents which invariably limits the extent to which the schools can perform.
Another obstacle to the development of secondary education in Nigeria is the persistent mass failure of pupils in public examinations. Some of the reasons adduced for this poor performance include lack of proper guidance by parents; failure of parents to provide necessary materials for their children; parents aiding examination malpractices among others.
1.3 Significance of the Study
The significance of the study are stated below:
The school administration can use findings from the study to understand the contribution of parents’ teacher association towards the improvement of education standard in Nigeria.
The study will serve as a guide to head teachers and Board of Governors, members of the public, district education officers and district inspectors of schools to realize how the effective implementation of parents’ teacher association wisdom can aid the improvement of the education standard in Nigeria.
Again, it will enable secondary school proprietors, principals and stakeholders of education to take cognizance of the advice from P.T.A’s meeting that can positively improve children academic performance.
1.4 Purpose of the Study
The research work examines the influence of parent – teachers association in early childhood learning in FCT Abuja. Other objectives include:
- To ascertain if perceived attitude of parents teacher association would influence children academic performance
- To find out if the financing of school by parents’ teachers association will improve the education standard.
iii. To find out if the involvement of parents’ teachers association in school administration will improve education standard.
- To find out if parents’ teachers association involvement in school events will improve quality of education in Nigeria.
- To examine the challenges faced by parents’ teachers association in improving the education standard in Nigeria
- Research Questions
In assessing the purpose of the study, this research project will answer the following questions:
- How would perceived attitude of parents’ teacher association influence children academic performance?
- How would financing of school by parents’ teachers association improve the standard of education?
iii. How would the involvement of parents’ teachers association in school administration improve education standard?
- How would parents’ teachers association involvement in school events improve quality of education in Nigeria?
- What are the challenges faced by parents’ teachers association in improving the education standard in Nigeria
1.6 Research Hypotheses
In carrying out this research work the following theoretical statements are buttressed to serve as a direction on which the work will be premised:
- H0: There is no significant relationship between perceived attitude of parents’ teacher association and children academic performance.
H1: There is significant relationship between perceived attitude of parents’ teacher association and children academic performance.
- H0: There is no significant relationship between P.T.A’s involvement in school administration and quality education.
H0: There is significant relationship between P.T.A’s involvement in school administration and quality education.
1.7 Scope of the Study
The research work examines the influence of parent – teachers association in early childhood learning in FCT Abuja. The research study is confined to Selected pre-primary schools in Kuje Area, Abuja FCT.
1.8 Definition of Terms
Parents Teachers Association (PTA): This refers to a forum comprising of parents, guardians, teachers, administrators and proprietors of a primary or secondary school created for the purpose of cooperating and collaborating towards the attainment of the school’s objectives and the sustenance of its overall development.
School: A school is an institution designed for the teaching of pupils (or “pupils”) under the direction of teachers.
Pupil Performance: This shows the result of children assessment, test and examination.
Education: Education in its general sense is a form of learning in which knowledge, skills, and habits of a group of people are transferred from one generation to the next through teaching, training or through research.
Influence: Influence is the action or process of producing effects on the actions, behavior, opinions, etc., of another or others.
Teacher: A teacher or schoolteacher is a person who provides education for pupils (children) and pupils (adults).
Parent: one that begets or brings forth offspring.
Association: A group of people organized for a joint purpose: the process of forming mental connections or bonds between sensations, ideas, or memories.
School Administration: School administration involves the management of all school operations, from creating a safe learning environment to managing the school budget. To further define school administration, one needs to consider the different areas of school administration and who performs these school administrative duties.
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