IMPACT OF SCHOOL CLIMATE ON STUDENTS’ ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE IN PUBLIC SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS
1.1 Background to the Study
It is widely accepted that education is one of the leading tools for promoting economic development as it covers some processes individuals go through to help them develop and use their potentials. Furthermore, through education, individuals acquire knowledge, skills and attitude that are necessary for effective living. This is the reason why in all modern nations, investment in education of the youth is considered most vital (Adeyemi and Adu, 2010; Okeke, 2007).
If the school is deemed the agent of change towards producing quality human capital for the nation, then, school climate is one very important factor that influences the change. Every school has its own unique school climate which differs from one school to another. Halpin and Croft (1963), a pioneer in conducting a study in school climate viewed school climate as having an individual’s characteristics. They also claimed that school climate portrays the personality of an individual and how that individual works towards achieving school success.
The school as an organisation has certain objectives which it has to achieve (National Policy of Education, 1998). In order to achieve the objectives, the organisational climate of the school is important. This organisational climate refers to the working condition among superordinates (headteachers) and subordinates (teachers) in a bid to achieve the objectives of the school (Adeyemi, 2008).
According to Hoy and Hoy (2006), school climate refers to school achievement. Najeemah (2012) claimed that a happy school is very motivated, with productive accomplishment which made it different from other schools. School climate also means a school’s social environment and culture which influence the behavior of its community. This means that school climate plays an important role in influencing the behavior and achievement of the community in the school particularly the performance of teachers.
A healthy school climate is a school that focuses on academic and the leader is able to influence the teachers and develop their belief that they have an impact on learning and teaching. Najeemah (2012) and Riechl & Sipple (1966) claimed that the characteristics of a school may affect teachers’ commitment and overall performance. Smith (2009) stated that teachers who obtain support from their leaders are more inclined to be committed to the vision and the mission of the school including the school values.
Teachers whether in private or public schools are saddled with the responsibility of performing their basic roles under a conducive and harmonious organisational climate. Suffice it to say that, this is why the National Policy on Education provided a watershed upon which the primary, secondary and tertiary levels of education are rooted (Amagionyeodiwe and Osinubi, 2006).
The climate of work plays major role in the life of every individual whether a student, teacher, employer or employee. Though, some people are yet to believe that climate brings about better performance. The school climate, which includes the classrooms, libraries, technical workshops, laboratories, teachers’ quality, school management, teaching methods, school size and policies, etc are variables that affect teachers performance (Orlu, 2013). Hence, the school climate remains an important area that should be studied and well managed to enhance teachers’ performance as well as students’ academic performance. Therefore, this study examines the relationship between school climate and students’ academic performance in Lagos State public senior secondary schools in Education District V.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The issue of poor students’ academic performance in Lagos State public secondary schoolsin Nigeria has been of much concern to the government, parents, teachers and even students. The quality of education does not only depends on students’ related factors, but also on the effective coordination of the school climate.
Moreover, when it comes to poor academic performance of the students, people are being too quick to blame parents and the students. But the fundamental problems facing education in Nigeria since independence are largely organizational or issuing bothering on school climate ranging from inadequate school structures, poorly equipped classrooms, high rate of school enrolment, inadequate instructional materials, high drop-out unto inadequate facilities; all these culminating to mass failure in public examination and poor quality of school leavers in Lagos State. It is against this backdrop that this study seeks to investigate the impact of school climate on students’ academic performance in Lagos State public senior secondary schools in Education District V.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of school climate on students’ academic performance in Lagos State public senior secondary schools in Education District V. Other specific objectives are:
o To investigate the effect of school climate on students’ academic performance.
o To examine the relationship between school environment and students’ academic performance.
o To find out the significance of school facilities in shaping students’ academic performance.
1.4 Research Questions
Based on the problems discussed above, the study provided answers to the following research questions:
o What is the effect of school climate on students’ academic performance?
o Is there any relationship between school environment and students’ performance?
o Do school facilities have any impact on students’ academic performance?
1.5 Research Hypotheses
The research following hypotheses were tested:
H01: There is no significant effect of school climate on students’ academic performance.
H02: There is no significant relationship between school environment and students’academic performance.
H03: There is no significant effect of school facilities on students’ academic performance.