IMPACT OF STRIKE ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF STUDENTS IN COLLEGE OF EDUCATION IN NIGERIA
BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
This work attempts to examine the impact of strike on the academic performance of students in Colleges of Education in Nigeria in general and the College of Education, Ikere Ekiti in particular. The College community is comprises of many staff unions; strike by any of these unions has the tendency of lowering the standard of education. In this work, attention will be drawn to the impact of COEASU’s strike on educational standard and students’ academic performances.
This is primarily because COEASU performs the vital functions of impacting knowledge on students. This work will also examine the effects of COEASU strike on
A study of this nature ls necessary because Education has the universal functions of contributing to the perpetuation of societies by transmitting ideal, values, and norms from generation to generation thereby preparing the young for active role in the society. Education also displays the value conflict and strains that exist between ideal and real norms that are typical of all cultures.
Fafunwa (1974) in recognition of the above, facts posits that can ideal educational medium should be able to help the beneficiaries develop their abilities, attitude and other forms of behavior which are of positive value to the society in which they live, thus preparing them for effective living. Aristotle (384 -322) and Education, recognized the indispensable functions and politics that the aims of education \should include;
- The realization of the capabilities and potential individuals.
- The development of the body
- The training of the appetites which is character or moral development and;
- The development of the intellect or reason. He further held that none of the above should be emphasized at the expense of the others, but that, this aspect should process in the following order – physical development, moral or character development and intellectual development.
In line with the above aims and functions of education, the Nigeria government in its 1981 policy on education stated that the five main national objective3s are the building of:
A free and democratic society
A just and egalitarian society
A united, strong and self-reliant nation
A great and dynamic economy
A hand of bright and full opportunities for all citizens
Presently, education in Nigeria has not been able to achieve these noble objectives because it is in deep problem of education downfall. Paramount among these problems is the incessant union strike which has often disrupted normal academic activities. Many reasons can be added as being responsible for these incessant strikes by the Academic staff union of Colleges of Education. Prominent among these problems according to COEASU are those of funding, lack of autonomy and dehumanizing working condition.
In trying to find a lasting solution to these problems, the long commission set-up by the Federal Government recommended in their report a 90% funding level for the next ten years, 1992-2001, this recommendation was adopted in the general agreement between the Federal Government, reneged on the agreement for instance, funding in 1996 should have been four times more than was predicted by the report but fell short of this expectation because of government lukewarm attitude towards funding education. The economic down-turn and the foreign exchange rates did not
Judging from the economic down-turn, the COEASU asked for a review of the agreement which government bluntly turn worn, following this, the nations’ 36 College s of Education academic staff went on strike from April 9 to September, 1996 without any form of learning within this period. This situation further aggravated by the way government reacted to COEASU’s strike action, instead of engaging in a meaningful dialogue with the lecturers, the government sacked them and even went as far as forcefully ejecting them from their official quarters. In addition to this humiliation, was government refusal to pay their salaries and other entitlements?
As a result of this, most lecturers left for private sectors while some others traveled to foreign countries in search of greener pastures. Some students took to crime, while others also secured temporary employments in various establishments.
The consequence of this strike and others that follows it, is a continuous fall in education standard. The conflict between the Federal government and lecturers has not finally been solved. Up till now, strike has been occurring intermittently in Nigeria Colleges of Education.
Following this, it becomes pertinent that a lasting solution be found through a comprehensive research on the effects of strike on the academic standard of students. This work intends to do this by drawing government attention to the various steps to be taken in order to eliminate this problem once and for all.
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