AN EVALUATION OF THE IMPLEMENTATION OF LANGUAGE OF INSTRUCTION POLICY IN PRIMARY SCHOOLS IN LOCAL EDUCATION AUTHORITIES IN UDENU LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA IN ENUGU STATE

ABSTRACT

The study was based on the evaluation of the implementation of the language of instruction policy in primary schools in Local Education Authorities in Udenu Local Government Area of Enugu State. The study adopted a descriptive research design and this was aimed at accurate description of observed phenomenon. The study made use of two sampling techniques; random sampling was used to select the 35 schools that participated in the study while purposive sampling was used to select 201 teachers who served as respondents. Four segmented questionnaire was used to elicit the responses of the respondent on language used for instruction, human resources available, material resources available and problems of teachers encountered in implementation of language of instruction policy. Mean and standard deviation were used to analyze the data collected for the purpose of this work. The results of the study reveal that English is the major language use for instruction in primary schools in Local Education Authorities in Udenu Local Government Area of Enugu State. The result showed that English is sometimes combined with the language of the environment in giving instruction. The result found the availability of teachers as human resources for the implementation of only English as language of instruction. The result also found the availability of material resources for the implementation of only English as language of instruction Local Education Authorities in Udenu Local Government Area of Enugu State. The result reveals that the language of immediate environment (Igbo) is not used as medium of instruction as against what is stipulated in National Language of Instruction Policy in Nigeria. Recommendation and suggestion for further study were provided.

CHAPTER ONE
INTRODUCTION
Background of the Study
Primary school is basically the foundation of formal education. Though it may not be the first entry point for some children, but it still remains the spring-board from where children take off educationally since the pre-primary stage is only a preparatory ground. Capturing this level of education, the Federal Republic of Nigeria (FRN 2004:14) stated in the National Policy on Education (NPE) that:

Primary education is the education given in institution for children aged 6 to 11years plus. Since the rest of the education system is built upon it, the primary level is the key to the success or failure of the whole system. The duration shall be six years.

Primary education therefore stands not only as the foundation on which other levels of education are built but also as the most complex of all other levels of education. Primary education, according to Musa (2012), is basic education, and as such the first level of education which a child undergoes before he/she moves on to the other levels of education. This level of education is complex because not only are the children coming into formal education with different socio-economic and cultural backgrounds but also with individual behaviours and or differences. While still emphasizing on the role of this level of education, Akinbote (2007), collaborating the views of Bruns, Mingat and Rokotamalala (2003), Akinbote, Oduolowo and Lawal (2001), UNESCO (2001) observed that primary education specifically is the level of education that develops in the individual the capacity to read, write and calculate. It thereby helps in the eradication of illiteracy. This is coupled with the fact that primary education is the only level of education that is available everywhere in both the developed and the developing countries, as well as in urban and rural areas. This explains why primary education is the largest sub-sector of any education system as it contributes to the transformation of societies via the education of children.

The importance of primary education must have prompted Adesina (2005) to opine that primary education is viewed as a foundation resource which must be evenly distributed because it is a pre-requisite for the equalization of opportunities for education across the country in all its known facets. The author maintained that the goals of primary education must be the same in all the states of the federation.

Specifically the goals of primary education (FRN, 2004:14) are to:

·      inculcate permanent literacy and numeracy, and ability to 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 the ability to adapt to the child’s changing environment.
·      give the child opportunities for developing manipulative skills that will enable the child 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 crafts of the locality.

These goals invariably imply that primary education should be rich enough not only for the overall development of the child but also be capable of making the child fit well into the society after going through the curricular/co-curricular activities therein in this level of education. In view of the importance of this level of education, Adeola (2007) states that appropriate curricular activities at this level of education include the development of literacy and numeracy, the study of science, social norms and values at both the local communities and the country as a whole. Furthermore, according to the author, the foundation for education should be laid through civics and social studies, health and physical education, moral and religious education, the teaching of local crafts, domestic science and agriculture. The National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (2010) thus observes that it is the education which promotes equality and human rights, challenges unfair discrimination and promotes the value upon which equality is built. Hence, the need for a well fashioned curriculum that can ensure the attainment of these goals cannot be over emphasized.

In pursuance of the goals, The Federal Government of Nigeria (FRN, 2004:15) has prescribed the following curricula for primary education: Language, Language of the environment, English, French, Arabic, Mathematics, Science, Physical and Health Education, Religious Knowledge, Agriculture/Home Economics, Social Studies and Citizenship Education, Cultural and Creative Arts (Drawing, Handicraft, Music and Cultural Activities) and Computer Education.
From the above stated subjects, it can be seen that the curriculum of primary school is not only diversified based on the number of subjects that are taught but also due to the fact that child rearing styles vary from culture to culture and from generation to generation (Esu, 2002). Understanding the curriculum of the primary school is therefore a highly complex activity. It is complex because the curriculum is about far more than simply the content of the subjects to be taught, it is also imbued with a range of assumptions concerning teacher’s ideology about the ways in which pupils learn, the teacher-pupil relationship, the teacher’s role and a whole set of notions about what children should be taught and expected to learn (Ifenkwe, 2013). This is even more so when we consider the fact that the learning needs of primary school children have personal and social dimensions and comprise the essential learning content required to enable them survive, develop their full capacities and improve the quality of their lives.

The curriculum of primary schools should therefore be relevant and sensitive to the values, beliefs, norms, tradition, aesthetics, science and technology, art, religion, and customs of the people. The curriculum must be sensitive to the totality of the way/culture of life of the society for which it is designed (Maduewesi, 2005). To achieve the objective of primary education and effectively teach the subjects therein in its curriculum, effective teaching and learning cannot be carried out efficiently without the use of language. This is because, according to Adegbite (2013:13), “The quest for an educational revolution must recognize language as a major factor, not only as its main medium of expression but also as a basic tool for human existence and survival”. Thus, language is needed for survival of any educational programme and for the projection of the people’s culture.

Language is thus indeed an integral and important aspect of the people’s culture and as such essential in primary school education. This is because the acquisition of language in any form is one of the achievements of childhood (Dollaghan, 2008). But then what is language? Santrock (2007), states that language is a form of communication, whether spoken, written or signed. Machado (1990) and Prezi, Ikekeonwu, Agbedo and Mba (2013) observed that it refers to a system of intentional communication through bundles of sounds which are called speech sounds, signs (gestures) or symbols that are.....

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Item Type: Project Material  |  Attribute: 91 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
Format: MS Word  |  Price: N3,000  |  Delivery: Within 30Mins.
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