1.1 Background of the Study
Education is considered as the most important instrument for change and natural development. However, of all the problems facing Nigeria education system today, none is more agonizing and persistent as the poor academic performance of the students especially of secondary school at the external examination conducted by West African examination council (WAEC) and national examination council (NECO).
Borisade (2012) described the failure observed in public examination as: a symptom of pervasive national failure syndrome. It would seem as it failure has bee stamped on every facet of our national Endeavour. One should then not be surprise if student performed poorly because they have become dischanted with academics and disillusion with the acquisition of unprofitable academic certificates.
The perennial failure at public examination in light of above assertion could be part of societal failure. A society that shuns academics and worship mediocrity and materialism will undoubtedly reduce the premium attached to academic certificates. A cursory look at our environment reveals that the Nigerian society has changed considerably within the past two decades. It is also evident that the youths are changing just as the society is changing just as the society is changing. The school system is both a product and reflection of the entire society.
Students' learning can be evaluated in many different ways, but in a developing country like Nigeria where about 40 percent of the adult populations are illiterates, parents use the performance of the children in public examinations to pass judgment on the schools and teachers. To them the logic is a simple one. The schools are supposed to be stated by good teachers and supplied adequate facilities and instructional materials. It is the responsibility of Government to ensure through such provisions and regular inspection or supervision that effective teaching and learning go on in the school. The task of parent is to send their children to school and pay whatever fees and levies charged by the institutions. Through many parents acknowledge shortage of funds, teacher and infrastructures in the schools and their own inability to buy all required books and other learning materials for their wards, yet they strongly believe that if the students perform badly in their examinations, the teacher and administrators have not done their job well and should take most of the blame.
Borisade (2012) maintained that high level of students' academic performance may not be guaranteed where physical facilities such as classrooms, laboratories and technical workshops are structurally defective, not properly ventilated and not spacious enough for use. He further emphasized that structural effectiveness, proper ventilation and well located space may lead to successful teaching and learning process.
Researchers have shown that the secondary school students' academic performance in Nigeria is poor. Borisade (2012), and Akubuiro and Joshua (2004) reported that there was persistent mass failure of student in the senior school certificate Examination (SSCE) conducted by west African Examination Council (WAEC) and National Examination Council (NECO). The poor academic performance of secondary school students in Nigeria may not be unconnected with seemingly poor resources allocation in the schools.
In recent times, performance of candidates in public Examination has declined. For example, the performance of candidates in may/June West African senior school certificate Examination (WASSCE) between 2006 and 2010, according to Dike (2011), has declined with mass failure recorded in English language and Mathematic. See table below.
Federal and state policy maker proposing new education program often base their argument on the need to provide more resources to school to improve opportunities for students. Many Americans seems to share this view.