EXAMINATION OF SOCIO-CULTURAL CONSTRAINTS AGAINST WOMEN EDUCATION IN NKWERRE LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF IMO STATE
The title of this research study is “Examination of socio-cultural constraints against women education in Nkwerre local government area of Imo State. The purpose of this study is to determine if the tradition of Nkwerre people militate against the education of women. On the course of this study, the survey research design was adopted. The total population of the study covers all the nine (9) government secondary schools in the area and a sample of two hundred (200) students was drawn using simple random sampling techniques, four research questions were formulated to guide the study and data collected were carefully analyzed using mean and the grand mean. Based on the result of the findings, it was discovered that ignorance on the part of the parents to sponsor the education of women, traditional belief that training girls for another man to marry are a taboo or mistake; preference to a male child, early marriage, etc impede the education of women. Finally, the researcher recommended that government as a matter of necessity should make the employment of educated women automatic as a means of encouraging other women, cultural and religious re-orientation, public enlightenment programmes sex education and etc.
CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION Background to the Study
There are three (3) basic components of human existence that man requires to satisfy. These to Osinulu (1994) are the physical, the spirituals and the mental. She stressed that physically man needs air, water, and food for survival, while spiritually, he requires religion and mentally, education for nurturing and developing natural intelligence.
However, the perspective that has been used to study the women have been developed over-time, and are based on personality traits and characterizations and biological and social reactions. Their characterizations only differ partially and from one period to the next. Studies on women are as old as history itself, but studies on consciousness are fairly recent, dating back to the suffragettes. Studies on women span through the different area, ranging from women and society, the role of women, women and education, the due role of women-culture and society, women and industrial society and women and labour market and so on. The different perspective reflects on the roles of women in different economics.
Women dedication has been a crucial aspect of gender issues since the latter part of the twentieth century and has attracted much concern and attention at the global, regional, sub-regional, national and even community levels. Indeed the desire to give a positive sense of direction to girl and women who lack education or left school early has necessitated the formulation of favourable policies and the implementation of bold actions in this regard.
However, the thrust of these actions and available literature has been to promote equal educational opportunity for boys and girls, to increase enrollment figures of girls and women in the school at all levels of education, to ensure access to education and eliminate obstacles to women education There is also the need to understand the educational ideas that shaped and influenced the development of women education in Nigeria Research conducted on women according to Amadi (2006) has shown that women are characterized by greater dependency, stronger social orientation and the tendency to become more easily discouraged by failure than men, this trait no doubt is very important in studying the socio-cultural constraint militating against women education in Nigeria.
It is believed that the socio-cultural factors militating against women education in Nigeria are so great and important and hence should constitute an area of interest for a developing country like Nigeria. There have been prolonged and sustained gender disparities and graduate output levels of education. It is against this background that women have been classified as a special group of people, with special needs that can be met through education. This study is very important in that it is aimed at identifying the socio-cultural constraints militating against women education and in doing so, make possible suggestions that will help to solve the problems
Statement of the Problem
Overtime, skewed educational accessibility has been inhibiting women’s socio-economic empowerment Conceptually
the stereotyped role assigned to women by the colonial ‘ideology of domesticity’ which emphasizes domestic education for the womenfolk has made gender asymmetry to be sustained in the country These prejudices have been exacerbated further by vagaries of missionary education and other male-gender privileging colonial literature (Harmnond and Jablow, 1992: 6).
The political culture that has emerged from the colonial orientation has been particularly patriarchal. It reflects gender inequalities in men and women’s role, and levels of access to state power, resources and institutions (Mama, 1997:71). Specific development policies targeted at women’s education and socio-economic participation have been largely ineffectual in the country. Unhealthy state-controlled developmentalism’ has, indeed, helped to erode (any) independent feminist initiative ever geared toward women educational progression in our society (Tsikata, 1997:381). Nigeria women’s access to formal education is still being constrained due to their unfair workload within the household division of labour. Consequently, the realization of the MDG3’s “gender equality and women empowerment” target is being impeded vacuously (Opaluwah 2007:5). Across various geo-political delineations in Nigeria, a greater percentage of school-age girls are needlessly out-of-school, compared with the ratio applicable to boys of the same age grouping Therefore the attainment of the MDF2’s target ie ‘education for all by 2015 is glaring at a cross-roads; having missed the initial deadline of 2005. It is all these incongruences outlined above that made a stringent questioning of the country’s political and institutional frameworks, as they pertain to educational accessibility imperative. These issues are thus the pre-occupation of this research study.
Purpose of the Study
The main purpose of this study is to examine the socio-cultural constraint to women education in Nkwerre local government area of Imo State. Specifically, the study will seek to:
1. Unfold the cultural constraint to women education in Nigeria and Nkwerre in particular;
2. Determine if the tradition, custom and culture of Nkwerre people militate against the education of women;
3. Determine if parents’ attitude towards educating their girl child hinders the education of Nkwerre women;
4. Determine whether early marriage hinders the education of women in Nkwerre metropolis.
Significance of the Study
This is a deliberate attempt by the researcher to show the needs for women education in Nkwerre local government area of Ebonyi state since women can contribute their quota to national development, it is necessary, that if they are educated, it will as well, show that the development of a country cannot be comprehensive without the participation of women, groomed at a tertiary institution.
The study will be more beneficial to all educators, educational planner, and the general public on the need for important improvement in women education. Above all, the study will serve as a good information source for women who have been discriminated against decade, now by their men counterparts, hence offers them the opportunity to free them from this ugly situation. Lastly, students and subsequent researcher who would want to benefit from this study.
Scope of the Study
This study is concerned with the socio-cultural constraints to women education with particular reference to Nkwerre local government area of Imo State. It will as well offer a reasonable suggestion that will reduce the problems of women education in Nkwerre local government area of Imo State.
Nkwerre local government has common boundaries with MPU in Aninri local government area of Enugu state and North by Awgu in Awgu local government area still in Enugu state, East by Ezewukwu in Bende local government area of Abia state and South by Oso Edda in Afikpo South local government area of Imo state and is made up of 17 traditional communities with a population of one hundred and twenty-one thousand, three hundred and sixty-three (121,363) persons. Male has 62.049 while the female has 52.314 persons according to the 2006 population census. The people are mainly traders who engage in petty trading, pottery makers, farmers and civil servant. She is naturally blessed with fertile land for farming and value culture.
Four research questions were formulated to guide the study.
1. What are the socio-cultural constraints against women education in Nkwerre local government area?
2. Do tradition, of Nkwerre people militated against the education of their women?
3. How does the parental attitude towards education of their girl child hinder the education of women in Nkwerre Local government Area?
4. Do early marriage hinder the education of women in Nkwerre Local government area?.