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THE EFFECT OF GEOGRAPHICAL LOCATION OF SCHOOL TO THE STUDENTS ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE
1.1 Background to the Study
School location refers to the particular place, in relation to other areas in the physical environment (rural or urban), where the school is sited. In Nigeria, rural life is uniform, homogenous and less complex than that of urban centers, with cultural diversity, which often is suspected to affect students’ academic achievement. This is because urban centers are better favored with respect to distribution of social amenities such as pipe borne water, electricity, healthcare facilities while the rural areas are less favored. This is also true in the distribution of educational facilities and teachers. These prevailing conditions imply that learning opportunities in Nigerian schools differ from school to school. It would appear therefore that students in Nigerian urban schools have more educational opportunities than their counterparts in rural schools have. While some studies have shown positive influence, others have shown negative influence of school location on the students’ learning outcome or achievement.
Several researchers have conducted research on school location and academic performance, making a critical analysis of locational factors. Hallak (1977) summarized that provision of education in rural areas is normally fraught with the following difficulties and problems; qualified teachers refuse appointment in isolated villages; villagers refuse to send their children to schools because they depend on them for help; parents hesitate to entrust their daughters to male teachers; some villagers have few children for an ordinary primary school; lack of roads or satisfactory means of communication makes it difficult to get books and teaching materials at school. In European countries, school location and student performance, however, are not strongly related after accounting for socioeconomic differences in Belgium, Finland, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, the Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States and in the partner countries and economy 4 Croatia, Dubai (UAE), Montenegro, the Russian Federation and Serbia (OECD, 2011). The variation in performance reflects differences in the educational opportunities available in rural and urban areas, and the characteristics of these locations, such as population density, distribution of labour markets, and the extent to which urban and Sub-urban areas are sought and populated by individuals from different backgrounds (OECD, 2011). In Nigeria, study indicates that location of schools relates to academic performance of students in Ekiti state. Onokerhoraye (1975) emphasized that lack of suitable school location has contributed to the imbalances of Western education from one part of the country to the other in Nigeria. Tanimowo, (1995) discovered that the distribution of school shows disorder, planlessness and inefficiency. The inefficiency here refers to pupil academic performance. The implication is that while people in some areas enjoy minimum travelling distances to acquire education, some people in other places suffer by having to cover maximum distances to acquire education. Over the past decade remarkable studies have indicated a correlation between the environment and academic performance of students. Environment plays major role in the life of every individual whether a students, teachers, employer or employee (Chukwuemeka, 2013).
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The geographical location of school result into a number of problems including; poor attendance, resulting in low achievement, increases of dropout rate, and amplifies a host of social problems (Debnath, et al 2010). Educational experts argue that students who have not acquired an association between academics and life experiences do not feel that good school attendance is relevant to their future.
Walter, (1998) contend that one of the factor that influence academic performance is school location/site of the school, most developed countries realized this and they environment make sure their schools is situated in the best location so as to minimize failure, to them variation in performances is due to variability in education material available between in urban and rural areas. Even though most African knows this especially Nigerian, schools are still not situated in the best place it should, most school are along the express road, market areas etc. this altogether distract the students and affects their performance. Other research concentrates looking on the general factors effecting performances such as inadequacy of resources, inadequacy of prior preparation, lack of support from the parents, laziness of the teachers, lateness of the teacher, incompetent teacher, poor monitoring and absence of supervision, but the main aim of this research is to find out the effect of geographical location on academic performance of students in Lafenwa High School, Abeokuta Ogun state.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The main objectives of this study is to find out the effect of geographical location on academic performance of students, specifically the study intends to:
1. Examine the factors influencing student’s academic performance in public secondary schools
2. Analyze the effect of geographical location of public secondary schools in the student’s academic performance
3. To find out the strategies for improving student’s academic performance in public secondary schools.
1.4 Research Questions
1. What are the factors influencing student’s academic performance in public secondary schools
2. Is there any effect of geographical location of public secondary schools in the student’s academic performance?
3. What are the strategies for improving student’s academic performance in public secondary schools?
1.5 Research Hypothesis
Ho: there is no effect of geographical location of public secondary schools in the student’s academic performance
Hi: there is effect of geographical location of public secondary schools in the student’s academic performance
1.6 Significance of the Study
The findings of this study will broaden the knowledge of education stakeholders to understand the current status of education and the roles of geographical location of schools as an influence in students‟ academic performances in public secondary schools. It is true that resources differ in their distribution; therefore the study informs all stakeholders that, they should put into account the distribution of resources according to the nature of environments. Concurrent to this, the study insists policy makers to recognize and identify areas where government at different levels could put into consideration and brought into focus in order to bridge a gap of educational attainment of children so as to remove inequality in performance. Furthermore stakeholders holistically must find way forward on the issue of poor performances among students in remote areas. Lastly, the study might stimulate for further research basing on large scope so as to come up with comparisons with this study.
1.7 Scope of the Study
This research work will be conducted in Abeokuta, Ogun state, the students and teachers in Lafenwa High School will be sampled for this research.
1.8 Delimitation of the Study
Finance for the general research work will be a challenge during the course of study. Correspondents also might not be able to complete or willing to submit the questionnaires given to them.
However, it is believed that these constraints will be worked on by making the best use of the available materials and spending more than the necessary time in the research work. Therefore, it is strongly believed that despite these constraint, its effect on this research report will be minimal, thus, making the objective and significance of the study achievable.