LEADERSHIP CHALLENGES IN PUBLIC POST-PRIMARY INSTITUTIONS; A STUDY OF PUBLIC POST-PRIMARY INSTITUTIONS IN ENUGU STATE, NIGERIA

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

 

1.1 BACKGROUND OF STUDY

The issue of leadership is very central to management especially human resources developments and application. The art of leadership is as old as age itself, and covers all aspect of life may it be simple one unit or extended family, social and religious organization, business, small or large industrial firms, politics etc.

Research shows that there are many ways of approaching leadership. Leadership is the moral and intellectual ability to visualize and work for what is better for the company and its employees. The most vital thing the leader does is to create team spirit around him. A good leader therefore is one who is capable of persuading others to move enthusiastically towards the achievement of group goals. Leadership can be seen in the context of voluntary participation of subordinates in an effort to reach organizational objectives. In this, “voluntary” is the operative word indicating that effective leadership does not connote the use of absolute power or authority alone. Indeed, successful leaders need to back up any authority rested in them with their personal attributes and social skills.

Leadership is the ability to guide, conduct, direct or influence the followership for the purpose of achieving common goals or task the leader thus possess the ability to influence others to achieve result. Leadership is concerned with the execution of those policies and decisions which help to direct the activities of an organization towards its specific goals.

Education in Nigeria is an instrument for affecting national development. Towards this end, the National Policy on Education set up certain aims and objectives which were to facilitate educational development in the country. In fostering these aims and objectives, the public post-primary school leaders have important roles to play. Among this roles include providing effective leadership in public post-primary schools, thereby enhancing better job performance among teachers. How effective the principal is in performing these roles have been a matter of concern to many educationists.

Education is the total efforts a community to raise its social, economic and political standard of life. Education is the process by which society passes its culture from one generation to another, while other holds the view that “education should aim”, not merely at creating and transferring technology, but also at developing people and resources.

The precarious state of Nigerian public post-primary schools calls for concern. It has been observed in the recent past that public post-primary institutions have derailed in the provision of qualitative education expected of them. The extent to which the school system is able to accomplish its stated objectives determines its level of effectiveness. Effectiveness in this context, transcends beyond students passing an examination. It encompasses students’ attainment in other domains of learning namely the affective and the psychomotor domains.

It has however been observed that the public post-primary institutions in Enugu North Local Government Area is not doing well in these domains of learning and this seem to make the society lose confidence in the system. For instance, the students’ academic performance which members of the society used mainly to measure the effectiveness of public post-primary institutions has witnessed unprecedented set back

Besides, it has again been observed that students of public post-primary institutions in Enugu North Local Government Area lack morals. High rate of indiscipline which manifests in form of absence from school, lateness to school, stealing, insubordination to school authority, smoking, cheating in examinations and among others are daily happenings in the schools. This raises a fundamental question as to the extent to which the schools are producing disciplined or morally upright school leavers into the larger society. The cause of the moral decadence among the youth is traceable to the non-teaching of ethics in the public post-primary institutions.

Personal experience has shown that very few public post-primary institutions leavers can communicate effectively or exhibit evidence of good and solid education background. It appears the students lack requisite technical skills to be able to function effectively in the society. These entire scenarios are pointers to the fact that the public post-primary institutions system is in a state of despair.

Several factors have been attributed to the perceived ineffectiveness of the public post-primary institutions among which are teacher factor, parental factor, economic factor, societal factor and principals’ leadership behaviour but this study was limited to the principals’ leadership behaviour as a potent factor for public post-primary institutions ineffectiveness. It has been observed that many public post-primary institutions principals in Enugu North Local Government Area do not involve their subordinates in their daily routine administrative duties and as a result do a lot of things themselves, thereby face challenges of all kinds.

 

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