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Appraisal Of The Management Of Early Childcare Centres In South East Zone Of Nigeria

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ABSTRACT

This study appraised the Management of Early Childcare Centres (ECC) in South East Zone of Nigeria. It was guided by six research questions and three null hypotheses. The study adopted a descriptive survey design. The population of the study consisted of 5,572 subjects (167 desk officers and 5405 head teachers). Simple random sampling was used in selecting 418 respondents (321 head teachers and 96 state desk officers) used for the study. A questionnaire titled Appraisal of the Management of Early Childcare Centres Questionnaire (AMECCQ) was developed and used for data collection. The instrument contained 53 items which focused on the appraisal of the management of Early Childcare Centres. The instrument was dually validated by experts and the reliability coefficient was established using Crombach alpha. The six research questions were analyzed using means and Standard Deviation, while z-test statistics was used to test the three null hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. An overview of the overall results showed that ECC are to a little extent established in compliance with the national minimum standard as prescribed by NERDC. Equally, staff is to a little extent recruited in compliance with the national minimum standard basic qualification as prescribed by NERDC. Likewise, ECC are to a very little extent supervised in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC.

Also, staff relates with children to a little extent in ECC Equally, ECC to a very little extent relate with communities where ECC centres are located and that ECC authorities to a little extent protect the rights of children. Based on the results of the study, the researcher recommends that; National and State desk officers should embark on regular visitation to ensure that ECC are established in compliance with the national minimum standard as prescribed by NERDC.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study

Education of the child world over is the greatest concern of parents, teachers, community and the government. The survival of any nation or culture depends to a large extent on the sound and worthwhile education provided for its children. A child, according to Obinaju (2004), is a young person especially between infancy and youth. A child is a young human being between birth and puberty. He or she is somebody under a legally specified age who is considered not to be legally responsible for his or her actions. However, the concept of a child differs from one culture to another, but in this study; a child is conceived as a person from the age of zero to five years under the care of parents or caregivers, helpers and securities in Early Childcare Centres (ECC).

ECC is a place where all the activities and programmes are deliberately directed towards the general development of the child. Maduewesi (2005) sees Early Childcare centre as a place where education is given to children from zero to five years. Children taken care of by ECCE programmes range from age O-5 years, Babalola(2010). It is a place where all the activities and programmes planned for general development of the child takes place. ECC is a place where services are provided by the early childhood professionals to create an enabling environment for a child to thrive and develop to the fullest potentials. The Federal Republic of Nigeria (FRN), (2004) recognizes the importance of ECC and thereafter, began to explore ways of implementing the centres. The public primary schools were director to established early childcare centers. In public sector, most ECC’s are being located within the established primary schools. Babalola (2010).

The Federal Republic of Nigeria in her National Policy on Education (FRN, 2004) makes provision for ECC. As referred in the document, Childhood/Pre-primary education is the education given in an educational institution to children prior to their entering primary school. It includes the crèche, the nursery and the kindergarten. The purposes of ECC as stipulated in the National Policy on Education by the Federal Republic of Nigeria (FRN), (2004) among others include: 1. to effect a smooth transition from home to the school, 2. prepare the child for the primary level of education, 3. provide adequate care and supervision for the children while their parents are at work, 4. inculcate social norms in the children, 5. learn good habits, especially good health habits, and each the rudiments of numbers, letters, colours, shapes and forms through play (P: 11).

ECC evolved in Nigeria as a special field of focus for development intervention. The ECC philosophy is premised on the development of the individual into a sound and effective citizen and the need for quality educational opportunities to all Nigeria children irrespective of any real or imagined disabilities (Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC), 2006). According to NERDC, the early childcare centre is established towards 1. strengthening the structure for appropriate early childhood intervention; 2. increasing the number of trained personnel, 3. providing adequate structural facilities, 4. supporting the development and 5. revision of curriculum to contain ECC specific messages as well as maintaining appropriate standardized teaching and learning programmes.

Despite the importance of ECC, some authors have doubted whether such an environment is made available in schools for Early Childhood Education. Augi (1990), noted that the quality of infrastructure and teaching materials in ECC is not tailored to children’s needs. In Augi’s observation, classrooms are overcrowded, children sit on bare floor and the child/space ratio is very low. The Monitoring of Learning Achievement (MLA) UNICEF report (2009), shows that lack of school-community relationship constitute a major impediment to effective teaching and learning at Early Childhood education in Nigeria. The education situation was considered not encouraging with less than 80% of school age children in schools. Apart from this, UNICEF (2000) report further showed that schools had inadequate classroom space, furniture, equipment, and teaching/learning materials, that water, health and sanitation facilities are inadequate, and that teachers use inadequate teaching methods because they are poorly motivated.

UNICEF (2000) further reported that in some parts of Nigeria, one in every three pupils does not feel like coming to school because of the teacher’s attitude. For instance, although corporal punishment is prohibited in schools, teachers were sometimes observed holding canes in a number of classrooms. UNICEF (2000) further noted that when children do not feel safe at school, the likelihood of dropping out from school increases.

The situation described above may or may not be quite different in South East of Nigeria where there are 5,405 ECC. The Centres are meant to prepare and enhance both social and intellectual development of children. They are also meant to encourage children to enroll in school, be actively involved and complete primary education as well provide adequate care and supervision for the children while their parents are at work. However, despite the number of ECC in South East of Nigeria, Enyi (2000) maintained that children do not like coming to school because they feel unsafe while in school due to teacher’s negative attitude. One may ask, are the ECC, teachers and communities friendly, and do they provide safe stimulating and healthy environment that promotes care giving, and children still feel unsafe in school? There is therefore the need to appraise the status of management in Early Childcare Centres.

Appraisal is a judgment or opinion of somebody, especially one that assesses effectiveness or usefulness. Kidwai (2010) defined appraisal as a clear, concise, regular and unbiased process of rating a system’s performance in its current position. Appraisal is the systematic acquisition and assessment of information to provide useful feedback about subjects or objects. Appraisal in the context of this study is seen as an examination of the status of Early Childcare Centres. In the process of appraising the Early Childcare Centres, both the strengths and weaknesses of the programme will be identified. Appraisal in this study is essential for the assessment of the worth, intentions, processes and outcomes of Early Childcare Centres.

Based on the foregoing and in order to achieve the objectives of ECC, NERDC in conjunction with United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), provided the minimum standard prescription/guidelines for the Early Childcare Centres (NERDC, 2006). NERDC maintained that the minimum standard prescription represents the minimum content, materials and practices that would be expected in the ECC in Nigeria. In the blue print of NERDC (2006) the characteristics of ECC are defined specifically for the Nigerian socio-cultural setting. Early Childcare Centrs :

1. provide care and support to the child in form of: good nutrition and health for children such as healthy and safe environment, psycho-social stimulation, protection and security,

2. inculcate in the child the spirit of enquiry and creativity through the exploration of nature, environment, art, music and playing with toys, effect a smooth transition from the home to the school,

3. prepare the child to adapt successfully when their current context changes,

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4. provide adequate care and supervision for the children while their parents are at work (on the farms, in the markets, offices, industry etc.) and

5. inculcate social norms-that is, culturally relevant skills and behavious which allow them to function effectively in their current context (P: 3).

The above five identified characteristics of ECC will be examined adequately to examine all the issues involved in Early Childcare Centres. This has become necessary especially as some authors such as Augi (1990), have doubted whether the quality of infrastructure and teaching materials in ECC is tailored to children’s needs. Teaching materials are unsuitable for children’s socio-cultural environment and consequently, the ECC do not provide care and support to the children. There is need to appraise the status of management of ECC in order to determine if there are areas that needs to be improved upon. This is because, efficient management of ECC is a yardstick towards achieving its stated objectives.

Management is an important aspect of every organization. Mgbodile (2003) defined management as the leadership which is aimed at influencing group activity towards goal achievement. Management is the co-ordination of the resources of an organization through the process of planning, organizing, directing and controlling all energies aimed at achieving the organizational goals. Harris and Lambert (2003) defined management as the co-ordination, support and monitoring of organizational activities. Management could be seen as the combination of theory and practice designed to ensure that the work of an organization is developed, supported and guided by an individual or team so as to effectively meet organizations purposes.

Management of ECC has to do with the co-ordination of the resources in the centres through the process of planning, organizing, directing and controlling all energies aimed at achieving the goals of ECC. To achieve the goals of ECC, the head teachers have to get things done through teachers /caregivers. Head teachers have to encourage cooperative effort to achieve stated goals of the ECC.

Management of ECC is the application and control of what goes on in the Centres to bring about the holistic development of the pre-school child. NERDC (2006) maintained that although the ECC project is non-formal in approach, ECC is viewed as an establishment and therefore, demands skillful management. Early childcare management requires a fundamental understanding of general management issues balanced by a thorough understanding of special nature and imperatives of professional childcare (Jameson & Watson, 2001). Management of ECC involves variety and forms of strategies designed to ensure that teachers and head teachers efficiently meet its organizational goals. As specified in the national minimum standard for ECC basic qualification in Nigeria, strategies for effective management of ECC, according to NERDC (2006), among others include; 1. empowerment of household/Caregivers to provide appropriate care for children 0-5 years at the household level, 2. establishment of community base centres for 0-3 years and community/school linked centre for 3-5 years, 3. institutionalization of appropriate training for professional caregivers to manage ECC, 4. creation of a network of stakeholders for regulating and ensuring quality in different aspects of ECC monitoring and evaluation (P: 4).

Management is an important factor in making the ECC conducive for learning. Through proper management, the parents and pupils will have confidence that the whole staff members are capable and willing to take care of the child’s needs. Chukwu (2011) maintained that there is every need for proper management strategies towards ECC. Chukwu further stated that the ECC management has a moral obligation to ensure that good conditions prevail and that children are well served.

Efficient management of ECC is a key towards achieving the objectives of the ECC. In the opinion of Krishnamachari (2010), management of ECC works better to prevent problems when it focuses not on teacher-directed academic instruction rather on child-initiated learning activities. The role of the teacher in the management of ECC is as a guide and a counselor who supports learners rather than teaching them in more direct and didactic ways. According to UNICEF (2006), this will be done to:

encourage children to think critically, ask questions, express their opinions, and learn how to learn; helps children to master the essentials enabling skills of writing, reading, speaking, listening and mathematics, and the general knowledge and skills required for living in the new century- including useful traditional knowledge and the values of peace, democracy and the acceptance of diversity (P: 6).

Management of ECC is a collective responsibility. The guideline for the ECC recommends that the management of these centres shall be the collective responsibility of the group of persons from the community and local government authority. The head teacher shall be the chief administrator of the centres. He/she provides the leadership that will ensure the smooth running of the daily activities in the facility (NERDC, 2006). In a similar view, Tahir (2005) noted that no matter how well ECC are equipped, staffed or funded, if the management is weak and uncoordinated the centre will naturally be faced with problems. Accordingly, NERDC (2006) identified the roles of the managers of ECC to include: 1. see to the overall management of the facilities, 2. provide the infrastructural, human and major materials resources for the establishment of the ECC facilities, 3. provide safe, stimulating and healthy environment that promotes care giving, 4. maintain routine and regular supervision of the facilities to monitor and evaluate learning and generate fund to sustain the facility (P: 10).

Management of ECC when understood and properly applied has the potential to improve learning outcomes and enhance educational quality for all children. In this study, management of ECC stands for application of management strategies such as planning, organizing, directing, guiding, monitoring and evaluation carried out by teachers, head teachers, communities and local government authorities to ensure that ECC effectively meet its organizations goals.

In order to achieve the goals of ECC, there is every need to ascertain the extent to which ECC are established. This is necessary in order to ensure that ECC management meets the basic characteristics of an effective centre. According to NERDC (2006:5), the minimum standard for establishing ECC should include: 1. familiarization with requirements of establishing standard ECC from the relevant department (Education/Women Affairs/Health), 2. filing of application, 3. screening by designated authority site, personnel, infrastructure, funding/management arrangements, and 4. licensing.

All the public ECC in South East of Nigeria need to be examined in order to verify the extent to which they are established as prescribed by NERDC. This is necessary in order to ensure that children are safe and are free from dangerous objects. Likewise, the concern of this study is to determine the extent to which ECCs are established in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by the NERDC.

The goals of ECC as prescribed by the NERDC will not be achieved by chance. It will be achieved through the collective effort of all the staff. Encarta (2010) defined staff as people who are employed by a company or an individual employer. As such, categories of staff in ECC include the caregivers, helpers and securities. There is need to examine how they are recruited in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by the NERDC, if the goals of ECC are being met. This will help to establish basic qualification for anyone who is to assist in ECC in terms of basic literacy and age. As specified in the national minimum standard for ECC basic qualification in Nigeria, NERDC (2006) maintained that appropriate standard in ECC teaching and learning should be as follows: 1. Caregivers for 0-3 year’s olds: Anyone with basic literacy and aged not less than 21 years, 2. Caregivers for 3-5 years olds: Preferably NCE holders, retired Nurse, Teacher, other educated retirees, or anyone with at least senior secondary school certificate, proficiency certificate and not less than 21 years old, 3. Helper: Not less than 21 years old, preferably having primary six or basic literacy certificate, 4. Security: Able bodied and responsible member of the community with minimum of primary school certificate or basic literacy certificate (P: 11).

Establishing a basic qualification for anyone who is to assist in ECC will enhance the child’s intellectual, emotional, and social development. Every child learns habits and forms patterns that are not simply changed in later years. Productive early education patterns for children will achieve great educational success (Bowman, 2001). This directs the needs for adequate care and supervision, if the objectives of ECC are to be met.

One of the objectives of ECC is to provide adequate care and supervision for the children while their parents are at work. This entails that supervision is inevitable in the management of ECC. Supervision is an effort that is planned to improve training at all levels of the school system. Akanbi (1996) sees supervision as an aspect of school educational administration which focuses on observation of all elements of teaching and learning situation with the aim of maintaining favorable-status quo and suggesting some efficient improved instruction. Supervision is a planned effort that is aimed at improving the standard of teaching and learning for the purpose of making learners react positively to school activities. In ECC, supervision is formally designed and carried out by Ministry of education officials to improve teachers and head teachers teaching skills for the purpose of assisting pupils learn and achieve the goals of ECC.

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Supervision in ECC can be carried out in two forms such as internal and external supervision. Wiles (1998) identified two types of supervision as internal and external supervision. In his own words, Ebirim (2012) defined internal supervision as a type of supervision in school that is carried out by supervisors within the school to ensure better outcomes in the process of teaching and learning activities. Internal supervision is a kind of supervision in which school administrators (heads of institutions) or any person they appoint interact with teachers and students and other school staff to ensure that they carry out their functions professionally. In ECC, internal supervision is carried out by the head teachers/caregivers using acceptable procedures. In line with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC (2006), internal supervision in ECC will be carried out by caregivers and head caregivers, PTA, and community committee.

On the other hand, supervision becomes external when the officers of the supervisory committee are not staff of the school. Ebirim (2012) sees external supervision as a type of supervision that is carried out by supervisors from outside the school to ensure better outcomes in the process of teaching and learning activities.

External supervision of ECC is an exercise consciously carried out by supervisors from outside the ECC to ensure better outcomes in the process of teaching and learning activities. NERDC (2006), in the national minimum standard for early childcare centres in Nigeria, maintained that external supervision of ECC will be carried out by national desk officers (annually), state desk officers (quarterly), LGA focal officers (monthly).

Through effective supervision of ECC, the head teachers and teachers can reinforce and enhance teaching practices to improve children’s learning. External supervision of ECC is directed towards assisting caregivers and head-teachers in their instructional activities so as to bring about desired change in pupils’ behaviour. Battistich and Hom (1997) maintained that external supervision when properly carried out in ECC will directly influence the standard and candid participation of caregivers and head-teachers in the provision of adequate care, development and supervision of pupils. In this study, external supervision of ECC is a way of guiding and coordinating the activities of caregivers and head-teachers by national desk officers, state desk officers and LGA focal officers for the purpose of improving quality instruction and ensuring the actualization of ECC education goals.

Central to the Early Childhood Care and education is the protection and respect for the rights of individual child. This is because every child has a unique pattern of development and aspiration that should be guaranteed by the centre environment. The ECC policy in respect to child’s rights departs radically from a conventional instrumental paradigm through the insistence on every child’s entitlement to quality of life, to respect and to well being (Enueme, 2004).

The issue of the rights of children and efforts at ensuring their welfare is global. According to the UNICEF/FGN (1995) publication, the basic principles of the children’s rights are as follows:

1. every child has the right to life and be allowed to survive and develop

2. every child is entitled to a name,

3. every child is free to belong to any association or assembly according to the law,

4. every child has the right to express (his or her) opinion and freely communicates them on any issue subject to restriction under the law,

5. every child is entitled to protection from any act that interferes with his or her privacy, honour or reputation,

6.every child is entitled to adequate rest, recreation (leisure and play) according to his or her age and culture,

7. every child (male or female) is entitled to receive compulsory basic education and equal opportunity for higher education depending on individual ability,

8. every child is entitled to good health, protection from illness and proper medical attention for survival, personal growth and development,

9.every child must be protected from indecent and inhuman treatment through sexual exploitation, drug abuse, torture, maltreatment and neglect,

10. no child should suffer any discrimination irrespective of ethnic-origin birth, colour, sex, language, religion, political and social beliefs, status or disability (P: 27).

These principles supports that every child is entitled to good health, protection from illness and proper medical attention for survival, personal growth and development. As such, every child in any ECC such as in South East of Nigeria needs to be given attention by the centres’ authorities through protecting their inalienable rights.

Children’s rights have been classified into two broad aspects namely; negative and positive aspects (Gye-Wado, 1990). The negative aspect according to Gye-Wado is the rights not to be abused or neglected, (which forms the core or fundamental aspects of children‘s rights). The positive aspect refers to additional rights which shall be accorded children even in situation where they are not abused or neglected and which can be positively claimed by them, for example, freedom of expression and freedom of association. While the negative aspect mainly comprises factors, which impinge on the proper birth and development of the child, the positive aspects comprises factors that ensure that a child is adequately equipped to fit in and, function as a member of the society.

In order to safeguard the interests of early children adequately, it is important to view children special needs as legal rights. The ECC management has a duty to ensure that children are not put at risk during the school daytime. Any document, which contains children’s names and their home addresses or other such information, must be treated as highly confidential. In line with this, the national minimum standard as prescribed by NERDC/UNICEF (2006) stated that the office accommodation should be a safe secured space for “safety of school records and materials”. It went further to state that the accommodation shall prevent child abuse and neglect, protect children against mosquitoes, harm and danger, and ensure security in the centre.

Arrangement for arrival at the school in the morning and being collected at the end of the day must be tightly managed in order to prevent children from wondering off on their own or being removed by someone who should not have access. NERDC/UNICEF further stated in the national minimum standard that ECC should be fenced in a manner that prevent outside interference such as rampaging animals and prevent children from straying outside. The school has to know if one parent is denied access by the court in order to prevent that parent from improperly removing the child from the school.

ECC holds the responsibilities to provide children with quality education in an environment that is safe, conducive, healthy and engaging. They also provide the children the opportunity to play, express their views, actively participate in the learning process and be protected from harm. UNESCO (2004) upholds that Early Childcare centres are to ensure that children have the right to learn to their fullest potential within a safe and welcoming environment.

The ECC management has a high-level responsibility for maintaining good physical and emotional health of children. They have a two-fold responsibility. Firstly, by directly caring for and protecting the children enrolled in the centres. Secondly, by introducing the children to healthy lifestyles and helping them to learn to care for their own health and hygiene (Hay, 2008). This is because poor school environment could result in an intensified sickness among children. UNICEF (1995) maintained that ECC holds the responsibility of providing a safe and healthy environment in the child’s learning environment. This, according to UNESCO (2004), will enable the pupils to know and act on the most appropriate and positive health related issues. As explained by Ibiam (2011), for effective teaching and learning to take place, education of young children must be organized and vigorously pursued through well-articulated programmes and secured environment provided by all concerned including community relationship. For effective teaching and learning to take place in ECC, teaching and learning must be organized and followed through well-articulated programmes under a secured environment provided by caregivers, head teachers, PTA, and community committee.

Community committee is people appointed or chosen to function on behalf of the community. How the committee relates with the ECC located in their area is vital in actualizing well-articulated programme. Mgbodile (2003) sees school community relationship as the degree of understanding and goodwill achieved between the school and the community. NERDC/UNICEF (2006), in the national minimum standard welcomed school community relationship in order to ensure: 1. regular interactive visits by parents to the centre, 2. follow up on children’s performance, 3. provision of meals while at the centre, 4. participation at PTA, 5. material/monetary resource contributions, and 6. provision of special services (P: 9).

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No school can operate in a vacuum without the society or the community it serves. The community where the ECC is situated is expected to provide special services such as paying regular interactive visits and following up children’s performance if the goals of ECC are to be achieved.

The prevailing circumstances surrounding the management of Early Childcare centres in Nigeria, ranging from staff recruitment, staff supervision, ECC location, staff relationship with the children, ECC relationship with the community have posed some doubts on the capabilities of the Early Childcare management in transforming the ECC in Nigeria into a world class standard. These abnormalities therefore, motivated the researcher to embark on the study to appraise the management of Early Childcare centres (ECC) in South East of Nigeria.

Statement of the Problem

ECC evolved in Nigeria through the NERDC in conjunction with UNICEF as a special field of focus for development intervention for children. The aim of ECC is to ensure that children learn in an inclusive, protective, and conducive environment. However, studies have shown that despite the establishment of ECC, the infrastructure and teaching materials in ECC are not tailored to children’s needs. Classrooms are without chairs and as a result, children sit on bare floor. Equally, there seems to be lack of school-community relationship in the centres and poor staff supervision. By implication, early childhood services will stay un-informed and unprofessionally connected. Equally there will be increased quality of daycare disparities in the childhood education. A child during the early childhood years needs a climate of security and acceptance, and requires enough stimulating environment where he/she has freedom to explore and manipulate different materials and situations.

NERDC in conjunction with UNICEF developed guidelines for the operation of ECC across the country. The guidelines include; providing adequate care and supervision for children while their parents are at work, providing healthy and safe environment, protection and security and to effect a smooth transition from the home to the school. However, since the establishment of the Centres in Nigeria, studies have shown that efforts have not been made to ascertain the extent to which the Centres follow the guidelines. There is a need therefore to ascertain the extent to which ECC have adhered to the guidelines. If the objectives of ECC are to be achieved, there is the need to also appraise the management of ECC in South East of Nigeria based on the minimum standard as prescribed by NERDC. The problem of the study therefore, is to examine the management of ECC in South East of Nigeria based on the NERDC recommendations for ECC.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study is to appraise the management of Early Childcare Centres (ECC) in South East Zone of Nigeria. Specifically, the study intends to:

  1. Determine the extent to which ECC are established in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC.
  2. Ascertain the extent to which staff is recruited in compliance with the national minimum standard of basic qualification prescribed by NERDC.
  3. Find out the extent to which ECC are supervised in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC.
  4. Determine the extent to which staff relates with children in ECC.
  5. Ascertain the extent to which ECC relate with communities where the centres are located.
  6. Determine the extent to which ECC authorities protect the rights of children in ECC

Significance of the Study

The benefits that shall accrue from this study will have both theoretical and practical significance. Theoretically, the findings of the study will validate and also add to Albert Bandura’s theory of social learning because the kind of learning that occurs in the theory is a typical form of social interaction at home and ECC. For staff to relate well with children in ECC, the Centres must have the capacity to relate and exchange ideas with the environment. Practically, the findings of the study will be beneficial to the stakeholders in Early Childhood Education namely; the government, ECC proprietors, parents, teachers, pupils and further researchers.

The results of the study will be beneficial to government through the Ministry of Education, Universal Basic Education and other organs of Government. It is expected to provide relevant framework for improving education that will promote child development that is inclusive, participatory and responsive. It is also expected to highlight the facilities on ground, and how the rights of children will be protected. Such information will be necessary in guiding the government in formulating policies and objectives to improve and sustain the ECC in Nigeria.

The findings of this research will also be beneficial to the ECC management/proprietors in organizing training and re-training, workshops and seminars for teachers. Some areas of inadequacies will be identified to guide head teachers/proprietors improve their centres. Proprietors will utilize the outcome of the research to create staff and community relationship which will in return increase enrolment in the Centres.

The results of the research will further be of benefit to parents, guardians and the community at large because of the improved quality education and teachers they will entrust their children and wards to for educational development. More awareness will be created on the part of parents/guardians and the community about ECC demands through advocacy visits to parents, guardians and the community.

The findings of the study will also be of benefit to teachers through improved working conditions including access to teaching materials and supplies. This will allow them to fulfill their job with greater professionalism in both public and private ECC. It will provide data on the requirements of the teachers for staff and pupils relationship. The data to be provided in the study will highlight the teacher behavior/actions needed from teachers in ECC. Such data will guide the teachers in handling the children in and outside the classroom.

The benefit of the study to the pupils is that, it is hoped that the children will enjoy stimulating learning environment supported by staff and community relationship in which they will have access to a variety of teaching and learning activities both inside and outside the classroom.

Further researchers who may desire to carryout studies relating to the problems under study will equally benefit from this study because; it will provide them direction on the guidelines for their study and indeed serve as an additional reference material for further studies.

Scope of the Study

The study was carried out in all the public Early Childcare centres in South East of Nigeria. The study focused on the extent to which ECC are established in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC, the extent to which staff is recruited in compliance with the national minimum standard of basic qualification prescribed by NERDC, the extent to which ECC are supervised in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC, the extent to which staff relate with children in ECC, the extent to which ECC relate with communities where the centres are located and the extent to which ECC authorities protect the rights of children in ECC in South East of Nigeria.

Research Questions

To guide this study, the following research questions were posed.

  1. To what extent are ECC established in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC?
  2. To what extent is staff recruited in compliance with the national minimum standard of basic qualification prescribed by NERDC?
  3. To what extent are ECC supervised in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC?
  4. To what extent do staff relate with children in ECC?
  5. To what extent do ECC relate with communities where the centres are located?
  6. To what extent do ECC authorities protect the rights of children in ECC?

Research Hypotheses

The following hypotheses are formulated to guide the study and were tested at 0.05 level of significance.

Ho1: There is no significant difference between the mean ratings of desk officers and head teachers on the extent to which ECC are established in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC.

Ho2. There is no significant difference between the mean ratings of desk officers and head teachers on the extent to which staff is recruited in compliance with the national minimum standard basic qualification prescribed by NERDC.

Ho3. There is no significant difference between the mean ratings of desk officers and head teachers on how ECC are supervised in compliance with the national minimum standard prescribed by NERDC.


Pages:  150

Category: Project

Format:  Word & PDF         

Chapters: 1-5                                                      

Material contains Table of Content, Abstract, References & Appendix.

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