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Background of the Study

The Universal Basic Education (UBE) is a broad concept and more ambitious programme than that of the universal primary education (UPE), the universal basic education is intended to inculcate more forcefully on the life of Nigerians than the universal primary education. Although, the Universal Basic Education is a programme, it is also an educational programme for the acquisition of functional literacy and skills.

The Nigeria educational system is guided by clearly defined aims and objectives, which are intended to mould the society into the defined form through the instrumentation of educational outcome from time to time. Education is an instrument of social, mental and economic development, through which right values and attitude for proper development are inculcated. Educational innovation consequently evolves whenever there are deficiencies in or problem with the accomplishment of objectives. Among such innovation are the introduction of universal primary education (UPE), the 6-3-3-4 system of education, introducing technology, integrated science and so on and recently the Universal Basic Education (UBE) was launched by President Olusegun Obasanjo in Sokoto on the 30 September, 1999.

During the launching ceremony of the Universal Basic Education (UBE), the honorable Minister of Education in his speech stated that universal education is Nigeria response to the education for all nations of the global community. More so, the programme was envisaged to be a solid foundation for life-long learning and evolution of Nigeria into a learning society in order to improve the average literacy rate of Nigerians from the current 51% to something close to 90% (Adeniran, 2013).

Although, the new Universal Basic Education Scheme started the study in 1999, it did not take off at the same time in various states of the Federation. The implication of this is that its full assessment may be too early, considering the time it actually took off at the state level. However, as young as the scheme is some of the challenges it is facing, both at the Federal and State levels are obvious. The world over, ability to allocate enough funds for a programme remains the greatest challenge from the authority concerned. This is also the case with the funding of the Universal Basic Education in Nigeria. Between 1999, when the country returned to participatory democracy and 2009, the central government has spent > 1.13 trillion on the education sector alone, with little to show for such a huge expenditure (Olanrewaju and Folorunso, 2011).

The primary and pre-primary level is very important because it is here the foundation should be consolidated at the junior secondary level of the programme. Despite the national policy on education (NPE) 1977 revised 1981, which has provided that the mother tongue be used as a medium of restriction to English in the upper primary classes most school in the country use English right from nursery and primary schools. Similarly, the policy provisions for these languages to be taught as school subject are not being implemented in most schools in the country. In nomadic and adult education, the intention is to give opportunity to those who by virtue of the culture and social economic background, were they are unable to benefit from the education early in life are to be treated specially along with the deft and dumb disable and blind. The treatment revolved adequate materials for learning (Aminu, 2013).

Statement of the Problem

Nigeria’s educational system has witnessed a catalogue of changes in educational policies and programes. Some of the changes have appeared to a number of people desirable while others have not been able to meet the desired target.

Many of the changes in educational policies in Nigeria have been a product of inadequate planning. There is therefore, a high level of uncertainty which is bedeviling the implementation of this programme in Nigeria schools. This situation call for much concern as the young ones is the future leaders of this country.

Recognizing the importance of primary education, all government in Nigeria (past and present) have placed premium on to it by making primary education the center piece of their educational policies. Since the colonial period therefore, both colonial and independent government in Nigeria instituted one form of educational reform or the other. This indicates that there is a link between the past and present in the educational development in Nigeria. The UBE was launched in 1999 with lendable programmes to improve the educational sector.

This study aims at carrying out a research on the evaluation of the Universal Basic Education programme in Kaduna North Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study is to examine the evaluation of the Universal Basic Education programme in Kaduna North Local Government Area of Kaduna State and suggest possible solutions which will assist to overcome the challenges faced by the programme. Specifically, the study seeks to:

1.   Find out the factors affecting the implementation of UBE.

2.  Identify the attitude of teachers towards UBE programme.

3.  Identify the role of parents in promoting the programme.

4.  Find out ways necessary to minimize the challenges.

Significance of the Study

This study will be of great importance to the following beneficiaries:

-         Government: It will lay foundation for numeracy, manipulative, communicative and life skills, as well as the ethical, moral and civic values needed for laying a solid foundation for lifelong learning in the country as a whole.

-         Ministry: The result of this study will benefit Ministry, because when teaching and learning in the UBE schools are done effectively, the major objective of the scheme, which is the acquisition of appropriate level of literacy and life skills, will be greatly achieved by the Ministry.

-         Curriculum Planners: The findings of the present study will be theoretically significant because it will contribute additional empirically derived theoretical body of knowledge on system theory. The results of this study will strengthen the tenets of this theory, and will help curriculum planners to expand the body of knowledge in the area of implementation of UBE programme in primary schools.

Research Questions

i. What factors are responsible for poor implementation of Universal Basic Education?

ii. What is the attitude of the teachers towards the UBE implementation programme?

iii. What are the expected roles of the parents towards promoting the UBE programme?

iv. What strategies are necessary to minimize the challenges in UBE Programme?

Scope of the Study

The research study covers only five government secondary Schools in Kaduna North Local Government Area of Kaduna State. The scope is delimited to the students in the study area.

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