ABSTRACT: The main purpose of this study was to examine school types and pupils academic performance in Social Studies in Oruk Anam Local Government Area Akwa Ibom State. A sample size of two hundred (200) pupils from five (5) selected primary schools and five (5) private primary schools across the study Area. Three research Hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. The instrument used was a questionnaire and pupils performance test in Social Studies. The statistical method used for the data analysis was independent t-test. The finding of the study showed that there is a greater influence of school types (public or private school) in pupils’ academic performance in social studies. It is therefore recommended that government should provide opportunities for teacher in government schools at all level to attend seminars, in services courses and workshops to buttress their pedagogical skills in the teaching of social studies for optimum performance by the learners.
1.1 Background to the Study
Schools are established for the purpose of teaching and learning. It is also important that the teachers and learners are properly accommodated to facilitate the teaching and learning that go on in the school environment, this is the essence of the school plant and facilities (Alini, 2004). As school population continue to increase, the influence of school type on academic performance of pupils is generating much research interest. Adebayo (2011) for instance, has demonstrated that school type, public or private did not make a contribution to the academic achievement of primary schools pupils independently of the influence of their home background.
However, Keeves (2008), accepted that type of school did not make a contribution to academic performance of pupils but they only make difference in their behaviour. According to Keeves (2008) the question whether the type of school attended affect the academic performance of pupils in primary schools is one of continuing debate in both developed and developing countries. Secondly, schools irrespective of ownership are expected to function in compliance with the achievement of the national education objectives. To this end, students are expected to perform brilliantly in the final examination as this determines the quality of output of secondary schools, this is one of the methods of measuring the effectiveness of a school system. The better the performance of the pupils the more effective the system is assumed to be.
In Nigeria and Akwa Ibom State in particular, it is the general opinion of people that private schools are better in terms of the availability of human and physical or material facilities and consequently pupils’ performance better in private schools than public schools. This situation has made many parents to enroll their children in private secondary schools. Experience has also shown that most pupils who secured admission into tertiary institution such as College of Education, polytechnics and university are from private secondary schools.
Therefore, as school population continues to increase, the influence of school type on academic performance of pupils is generating much research interest. Although, the incidence of poor performance of pupils appears to be more common in public schools, private schools are not free from the declining tide thread.
However, some studies have examined locational planning and their attendance consequences on the performance of pupils in various subjects in Oruk Anam Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State. The study was intended to assist education authorities of various schools to decide where a particular type of school in each location. Mbakwe (2006) reported that public school were inferior and lacking in the range of facilities, with high staff turnover and suffered from lack of continuity in their curriculum. He also observed that there is a significant difference in school
type. Based on the background findings, this study was therefore sought to examine school type and pupils’ academic performance in social studies in Oruk Anam Local Government Area.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The issue of poor academic performance of pupils in social studies in Akwa Ibom State has been of much concern to all and sundry, the problem is so much that it has led to the widely acclaimed fallen standard in education in Oruk Anam Local Government Area in particular, and, other stakeholders in education have condemned the high rate of poor academic performance of pupils in external and internal examinations, yet the findings does not really indicate the major problems, hence the researcher suggested that the type of school one attends determines the academic performance of that child. This poor performance is not limited to public schools alone; private schools were also involved.
On the other hand, socio-economic status of parents also influence pupils’ academic performance as related to this study, the question is, does school types have any influence on pupils’ academic performance in social studies? If yes, what should we do in other to overcome this problem of poor academic performance? It is in the light of this that this study sought to examine school type and pupils’ academic performance in Oruk Anam Local Government Area.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The main purpose of this study was to examine school type and pupils’ academic performance in social studies in Oruk Anam Local Government Area. The specific objectives were:
- To examine the influence of public/private schools on pupils’ academic performance in social studies in Oruk Anam Local Government Area.
- To assess the influence of girls/boys schools on pupils’ academic performance in social studies in Oruk Anam Local Government Area.
- To ascertain the influence of day/boarding school on pupils’ academic performance in social studies in Oruk Anam Local Government Area.
1.4 Significance of the Study
- This study will enable parents and teachers to have a better assessment of the actual factors responsible for pupils’ success or failure so as to correct any misconception.
- This study could suggest to government the need for adequate supply of available facilities that will encourage pupils academic performance in social studies.
- This study on school types will enlighten parents on which school they should encourage their wards to attend.
- Finally, this study will act as an index for future researchers and will also add content to literature reviewers.