APPRAISED THE MANAGEMENT OF PHYSICAL FACILITIES IN PUBLIC AND PRIVATE COLLEGES OF EDUCATION IN SOUTH EAST NIGEIRA

APPRAISED THE MANAGEMENT OF PHYSICAL FACILITIES IN PUBLIC AND PRIVATE COLLEGES OF EDUCATION IN SOUTH EAST NIGEIRA

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the Study

The continual increase in school enrolment in Nigeria in recent years has led to corresponding needs of more qualified teachers, non teaching staff, material resources and physical facilities. This trend has in turn led to demand and employment of personnel and provision of requisite facilities, thus, increasing the cost of financing education. However, the rate of school enrolment still far outweighs the rate of provision of teaching staff and facilities because of insufficient financial backing. Akilaiya (2001) observed this trend, pointing out that the non-corresponding expansion in facilities, has resulted in gradual but general collapse of the system. The continual increase in school enrolment and the need for more qualified teaching staff led to the establishment of colleges of education.

Colleges of education are tertiary institutions of learning formally established to produce highly dedicated and efficient teachers for the basic education system. Colleges of education, whether public or private award the Nigeria Certificate of Education (NCE). As teacher education institutions, the goals of Colleges of Education according to the Federal Republic of Nigeria (2004) include: encouragement of the spirit of enquiry and creativity in teachers; helping teachers to fit into the social life of the community and society at large and to enhance their commitment to national objectives; providing teachers with the intellectual and professional background adequate for their assignment; and to make them adaptable to any changing situation not only in the life of their country, but in their wider world; enhancing teachers' commitment to the teaching profession.

For colleges of education to achieve the above objectives, the physical facilities made available to them must be efficiently and effectively managed. Colleges of education are administered by Provosts and a host of other officers,

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including the Deputy Provosts, Registrars, Deans of different schools, Bursars, Librarians and Heads of Departments. These staff decide on what happens in their colleges, they plan, procure, arrange, organize and allocate physical facilities in their institutions.

College physical facilities refer to the buildings, playgrounds and mobile structures provided for the purpose of enhancing teaching and learning process. Oshahem (1998) referred to school physical facilities as tangible structures, which serve educational purposes. They stand for the physical expression of the existence of any school, as school programmes are expressed through them.

College physical facilities, according to Ehiametalor (2001), are operational inputs of every institutional programme. For effective teaching and learning situation, physical facilities and educational goals should be viewed as being closely inter-woven and inter-independent. These physical facilities represent learning environment which has tremendous influence on the comfort, safety and performance of learners. Physical facilities ought to be available as they play major roles in the implementation process. Availability of physical facilities refers to provision made in this regard by and or to the colleges for effective teaching and learning. Provision of physical facilities are expected to be among the very first preparations necessary for new schools.

The National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE), among several other responsibilities, usually carry out a resource visit to any new college of education whether public or private to ascertain extent of availability of physical facilities for its programmes. Consequently proprietors of these colleges ensure that provisions are made for needed physical facilities. Availability of physical facilities is therefore a prerequisite for establishing and accrediting a college of education in Nigeria. Under normal circumstances, the following physical facilities ought to be available-lecture halls and classrooms, administrative blocks, students' hostels, toilets, football field, lawns, cafeteria, plant house, security post, gymnasium, health centre laboratories, libraries, among others.


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Physical facilities are expected to be adequately provided to create favourable environment for learning. National Commission for Colleges of Education (2012) out-lined criteria for determining adequacy of facilities. For instance, a standard chemistry laboratory is meant to serve only 50 students at a time and as such considered inadequate when utilized by more than that number of students. Lecture theatres and lecture halls to be provided for up to 500 students at a time, and with public address system. There should be adequate number of class rooms for seminars; group discussions, etc. vehicles should be provided for Teaching Practice Supervision. Each senior staff should have a comfortably furnished office to himself/herself. There should be an office for the support staff (typist, clerks, etc) with relevant equipment (e.g. computers, typewriters, reprographic machines, etc).

There should be enough books in the library to cover all areas of the subject in the ratio of one student to ten books. The recommended staff/student ratio is 1:25 for education, in view of the fact that all students in the college offer the programme.

Departments and units in the School of Education should be sufficiently staffed with technologists/technicians, clerical and administrative personnel. Standard class rooms should be built to accommodate at least 40 students in each. There should be adequate staff offices to be shared by 2 lecturers per office, while the Heads of Departments should have a comfortable office to themselves. Every lecturer should have at least a table and a chair to sit on. (NCCE manual for the management of resources in Colleges of Education in Nigeria, 2012).

Notably availability of physical facilities in the colleges of education does not guarantee their adequacy and effective utilization, management and maintenance. Poor utilization and maintenance of facilities constitute serious hindering factors in effective teaching and learning. Basically, the standard or tone of any institution of learning is evaluated through examination of its physical


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facilities available for the implementation of its teaching and learning programmes. This is usually the base upon which school supervisors insist that physical facilities should be adequately put in place and the school neatly kept. It is so because the quality of academic programmes in educational institutions bears relevance to the availability or the lack of physical facilities.

Physical facilities, apart from being provided, are expected to be properly utilized for goal attainment. Utilization of physical facilities is as important as making them available. It remains one of the major tasks of the college management to ensure that available physical facilities are effectively utilized. Since physical facilities cannot be isolated in pursuance of our educational objectives in institutions of learning, they must be properly utilized. Proper management and utilization of physical facilities nevertheless are important component of good school administration.

However, Abraham (2003) stated that it is sad to see students standing up in crowded classrooms receiving lectures in most of the colleges of education. This is so because the equipment needed to promote teaching and learning are lacking. Diso & Njoku (2007) further noted that the prevailing circumstance in virtually all the colleges of education is overcrowded hostels, poorly maintained classrooms as most floor and walls are found dilapidated and hazardous. Often, doors and windows became out of use and create a situation of insecurity, while some college buildings are usually seen in bad condition with either blown-off roofs, broken walls, leaking roof or both, which constitute danger to the lives of the users and invariably pose a threat to the programmes of the college. Again most college environment appears untidily kept, suggesting that conservancy facilities are either not available, or inadequately maintained. The situation creates unhealthy study environment, which negatively affects teaching and learning as condusive schools and classrooms remain important parameters for effective implementation of educational programmes.


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The condition of the essential facilities will determine the extent of their utilization. This is quite essential because proper care of the college ground and buildings will always be a positive factor in college administration. It therefore calls for the necessity of carrying out effective maintenance on available physical facilities regularly. Akilaiya (2001) stated that maintenance of available physical facilities refers to keeping the building and equipment in as near as their original status as much as possible. Depreciations begin from the day the physical facilities are taken over by the user from the provider. The tear and wear of the facilities result from usage, physical decay and accident. Depreciation is inevitable but the rate can be controlled through regular maintenance.

To ensure proper management of physical facilities in colleges of education a body known as National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE) was created. This body oversees the activities of all colleges of education in Nigeria, whether Federal, State or privately owned. It is therefore, in pursuit of good management practices, that the National Commission for colleges of education in its manual for the management of resources in colleges of education in Nigeria, set up standard practice instructions on how to plan, procure, utilize, maintain, safeguard and supervise physical facilities and equipment among other guidelines. The purpose of issuing such manual is to ensure that provosts and all management staff of colleges of education are guided by it in the management of physical facilities and equipment.

The Federal Colleges of Education receive allocation from the Federal Government, State College of Education receive grants from state government while Private Colleges of Education can receive donations from parent communities and philanthropic organizations to help them set up physical facilities and equipment.

The NCCE manual 2012, among other things, stated that planning for physical facilities and equipment should be the collective responsibility of all the management staff, principal officers, Deans of schools and Heads of


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Department. The manual provides that consideration should be given to the availability of funds during the planning process. The manual also provides that Heads of Department and Deans of schools should make useful inputs in the maintenance and safety of physical facilities and equipment as well as their supervision. There are instances that suggest that the manual is not strictly followed in the management of colleges of education, vis-a-vis the extent of compliance with its provisions.

Management is the process of planning, organizing and coordinating material, financial and human resources in an organization purposely to achieve the organizational goals or objectives. According to Okafor and Udu (2008), management is a social process concerned with identifying, maintaining formally and informally organized human and material resources within a social system. Similarly, Aliyu (2003) and Ireogbu (2004) saw management as the art of getting things done through people. This implies that management involves human beings that have the capability of planning, organizing and carrying out activities in an orderly manner. It provides people with directions towards attainment of organizational goals. To determine success or failure of the managers, appraisal is necessary.

Appraisal is normally used to pass a judgment on the entity being appraised. This is probably why Hornby (2000) defined appraisal as a judgment of value performance. It is perceived differently by different writers. For instance, Adeycmi (2009) viewed performance appraisal as a systematic and formal assessment of both employers and employees, made in a prescribed and uniformed manner at a specified time to identify both individual and group weaknesses and strengths so that weaknesses can be corrected and strengths developed or built upon. Appraisal focuses on the performance of activities over a period of time. The aim is to improve performance, since judgment will be provided and areas of strengths and weakness identified. Therefore appraisal in this study is the identification of the strengths and weaknesses of the


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management of colleges of Education in the area of managing physical facilities.

Appraisal is the managing of employees' performance in a continuous process. It involves making sure that the performance of employees contributes to the goals of their teams and the business as a whole (Scherer, Shorr and Johnstone, 2001). Appraisal is the process used by management to inform employees individually how well they are doing in the "eyes" of the company (Leonard & Edwin, 2002).Appraisal, when managed effectively is a good motivational tool because it provides the opportunity for employees to identify ways of meeting their higher order work needs, that is, one related to creativity and self fulfillment (Obanya, 2002).

This study is focused on the South-East zone of Nigeria which has ten colleges of education, made up of six public and four private colleges (See Appendix E). Six out of the ten colleges of education were selected and sampled. The sample size is made up of four public and 2 private colleges (See Appendix F). The pubic colleges of education sampled are very popular and strategic in the zone of study. also, most of the colleges have served the purpose of training teachers for a long period of time. Among the public colleges of education, sample is the federal college of education Eha-amufu. This institutions came into existence following the announcement on 12th February 1981 of the establishment of the college of education Eha-amufu by the former Governor of the old Anambra, State, Senator Jim I. Nwobodo. In August of the same year (1981), the newly appointed Provost and Registrar of the college, Prof. R.N. Egudu and Mr. Ngozi Anyakora respectively took off from their temporary office at Enugu to the present site of the college which was then occupied by the teacher training college Eha-amufu.

The aims of the college at its establishment were to:-

1.          organize, improve and develop courses for the training of various categories of teachers.

2.          promote research and advancement of science and learning;


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3.          serve as a centre for educational research, especially as applied to local conditions;

4.          organize, improve and extend education to a standard higher than secondary education level; and

5.          encourage all classes and communities without any distinction, to pursue a liberal course of education

Source: (GSE Handbook, 2003:3).

Physical facilities is explained to refer to the buildings, playgrounds, heavy light generating plants, laboratories, gymnasium and other mobile structures provided and utilized for the purpose of helping education providers, to successfully implement teaching and learning programmes in their schools.

Physical facilities management are all the processes involved in planning, procurement, utilization, maintenance and securing the available facilities. Physical facilities management is a management function which if performed creditably, will help preserve available facilities for use by education providers thereby, enhancing teaching and learning.

The private colleges sampled also provided the researcher with the needed information, having served the purpose of training teaching staff for a considerable period.

Statement of the Problem

Physical facilities constitute an important factor resource for the implementation of educational programmes in Nigeria. It's management is very important because when physical facilities are poorly managed, the desired educational objectives will not be achieved. This is the reason why the National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE) developed a manual guiding Provosts, Principal officers, Works department heads, Deans of schools and Heads of departments in the management of physical facilities. This manual is called- Revised manual for the management of resources in colleges of education in


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Nigeria. The manual has provision for planning, procurement, utilization, maintenance, safety and supervision of physical facilities.

Colleges of education in Nigeria presently and in all ramifications appear to have been bedeviled with physical facility-related problems. The researcher has observed that the prevailing circumstance in virtually all the colleges of education is overcrowded hostels, unconducive classroom as most floors and walls are found dilapidated and hazardous. Often, doors and windows become out of use and create a situation of insecurity while some college buildings are usually seen in bad condition with either blown-off roofs, broken walls, leaking roofs or both which constitute danger to the lives of the users and invariably pose a threat to the programmes of the college. Again, most college environment appear untidily kept suggesting that conservancy facilities are either not available, inadequate, poorly utilized or inadequately maintained. The situation creates unhealthy study environment, which negatively affects teaching and learning, as conducive school and classroom remain important parameters for effective implementation of educational programmes. Furthermore, that students are often seen struggling to be first to use some of the sporting facilities indicated a problem which negatively affect the attainment of college set-goals.

It is sad to hear the often negative opinion of most members of the public about some graduates of colleges of education who do not know the value and use of physical facilities. The situation is disturbing and calls for thorough investigations into both the remote and immediate causes, as no meaningful academic work in sciences may be attained without adequate end functional physical facilities. Hence the import of this study is to appraise the management of physical facilities in public and private colleges of education in south, East zone of Nigeria. The researcher is worried that if the present situation of poor management of physical facilities in our colleges continue, it will affect teachers and student performances, thus, affecting our basic education system


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Purpose of the Study

The main purpose of the study is to appraise the management of physical facilities in public and private colleges of education in the South- East Nigeria.

Specifically, the study will:

1.     determine the extent to which management of public and private colleges of education adhere to the manual on planning for the procurement of physical facilities

2.     investigate the state of physical facilities in the colleges.


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