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STUDENTS’ AND TEACHERS’ PERCEPTION OF COUNSELLING NEEDS OF SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS

STUDENTS’ AND TEACHERS’ PERCEPTION OF COUNSELLING NEEDS OF SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS

ABSTRACT

Counselling needs are needs  of  a student that are required to  resolve  his/her  problems  which he/she  confronts  in  day  to  day  life situations and also to enrich his personal development. The purpose of this study was to investigate teachers’ and students’ perception of counselling needs of secondary school students in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun State. Therefore, related literature which dealt with the teachers’ and students’ perception of counselling needs of secondary school students, was also reviewed as part of this study.

The study employed a descriptive survey. Two research instruments were used in this study,  teachers’ perception questionnaire (TPQ) and students’ perception questionnaire (SPQ) were used as the instrument for data collection; Using simple random sampling techniques, two hundred questionnaires were distributed to students from the Ijebu North local government in Ago Iwoye. The data collected were thus analyzed using frequency count and t-test statistics.

The findings of the study revealed that there is a significant difference between the perception of teachers’  and  students’ of counseling needs in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government, there is no significant difference between male and female students’ perception of counselling needs in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government and there is no significant difference between male and female teachers’ perception of counselling needs in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government.

 It was concluded that curriculum developers should endeavour to take a critical look into the curriculum so as to improve the level of interest by students and teachers towards counselling needs so as to curb mass the negative effect of counselling as always recorded across the world every year.

The study therefore recommended that there is need to organize for seminars and  workshops to  offer continuing education in guidance and counselling. This will equip the teacher counsellors with latest theories and techniques of counselling to make them more effective counsellors and School  administrators  should  endeavour  to  provide  all  resources  for  guidance  and  counselling.  These include not only a counselling office equipped with reference materials, but also students’ personal files and adequate career resource materials.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1   BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

The inception of school counseling did not occur until the beginning of the 20th century.  In its initial stages, school counseling represented a service provided to students primarily for vocational guidance purposes such as preparing students for work after school and discussing potential careers. Frank Parsons, known as the Father of Vocational Guidance, instigated the integration of career guidance at the high school level with the idea of designating specific counselor positions within the school to offer vocational guidance (Schmidt, 2003). Therefore, school counselling was borne out of offering career services to students. As the 20th century moved forward, academic guidance became more interwoven into the vocational counselor’s responsibilities (Gysbers, 2001) and hence the need for counselling in schools. Guidance leaders like John Brewer and G.E. Meyers began emphasizing the educational role that counselors could assume within schools. By the mid 1930’s into the 1940’s, counsellors began providing personal counseling to students as well. Therefore, in addition to providing academic and vocational guidance, counselors began offering mental health services to students.

The age group of secondary school students extends from 14 to 19, which span in the later adolescent period. Adolescence is considered as  the  most  tumultuous  period  of  life. Hall  (1976)  rightly  remarked  that adolescence  is  the  period  of  stress  and  strain,  storm  and  stiff. The  life  of  modern  industrial  societies  is  so complex  where  the  intricacies  of  adolescence  period  are  more  hazardous.  The basic characteristics  of secondary school students  in  modern  times are  increased  emotional  instability,  period  of unrealism,  hero  worship,  moral dilemma, faster changes in the physical and biological system, temporary imbalance of whole endocrine system, tendency to incline towards anti social behaviour, drug and sex abuse and several other unique characteristics. It is  widely  accepted  that  the  adolescent  students need counselling  support when  they  face  personal,  social, familial  and  educational  issues.  The present investigation  is  directed  towards  the  identification  of teachers and students perception of counselling needs of  secondary school students in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun State.

A need is any lack or deficit of something within an individual, either acquired or physiological, whose fulfilment would tend to promote the welfare of the individual. (Biswas & Aggarwal, 1971) Counselling needs are needs  of  a student that are required to  resolve  his/her  problems  which he/she  confronts  in  day  to  day  life situations and also to enrich his personal development.  Counseling  needs  being  a  major  factor  to  complement  guidance,  was  also  looked  at through the teachers/students‟ eyes. How both parties (teachers/students) view the need for counseling services in secondary school.  Students and teachers should view the  advantages  and disadvantages if it is introduced. In this study however, the perception of the students and the teachers shall be considered greatly towards counseling services in secondary schools.

Counselling needs seems to be growing in schools, for instance secondary schools experienced rampant fights and boycotting of classes. With the disintegration of African cultures, and a busy economic world, parents have left counselling of children to the teachers.  On the other hand, teachers are under pressure to produce results academically (Nasibi, 2003).  Therefore, little attention is given to the area of behavioural change which leads to a situation where students are not imparted with life skills.  With this kind of situation, there is need to find out the perception of teachers and students of counseling needs amidst secondary school students.

Counseling is a professional field which has a broad range of activities and  services  aimed  at  assisting  individuals  to  understand  themselves,  their  problems,  their school environment and their world (Lunenburg, 2010). The  main policy goal for secondary level  education  is  the  provision  of  resources  that  would  allow  all  school  age  children,  and others so desiring, to receive and complete a junior high school program of quality. Further, that as many as can benefit as so wish, move on to and complete a diversified broad base high quality  senior  high  school  program  or  its  equivalent  in  readiness  for  the  next  stage/phase  of living and learning. Counseling is informally offered by elders  and  clan  heads.  All members of the extended  family  especially  anyone  older  than  other  is  expected  and  was  looked  on  to  for counseling  the  younger  members  of  the  family.  Therefore grandparents, aunts, uncles,  older brothers or sisters were involved in informal counseling. Skills in carving, hunting and other occupations  needed  later  on  in  life  were  passed  on  to  young  people  by  parents  at  different stages in the development of each child. Some of the behaviour and skills were learnt either by observing  adults,  or  acquired  through  other  means  of  training. Guidance  and  Counseling for  individuals  have  always  formed  part  of  the  African  strategy  for  combating  personality problems and practiced by indigenous counselors (Robinson, 1987).

A  lot  of  changes  have  taken  place  and  many  more  will  continue  to  take  place  in  our cultural  and  social patterns of  life.  This  has  occurred  as  a  result  of  the  intrusion  of  other cultures  and  social  habits,  and  the  developments  in  modern  science  and  technology.  Such changes bring  in  new  ways  of  life  and  values. Girls  and  boys  face  major  challenges  in dealing  with  changes  in  adolescence,  making  educational  decisions,  handling  the  conflicting cultural  messages  and  values,  managing  their  sexuality  in  a  social  environment  that encourages delay in adult hood, coping with changes in family structures and in essence giving counselors no choice than to take the responsibility of helping the students. Understanding and coping  with  issues  of  HIV/AIDS  for  example  single  parent  families,  adolescent  headed families,  break  down  of  the  extended  family  and  existence  of  orphans.  All these  and  others not mentioned here are challenges that affect the students life and performance in schools. They  have  to  be  assisted  to  face  them  objectively,  with  courage  and  appreciation  through counseling services. Hence, in the light of this, the study is set to look into teachers’ and students’ perception of counselling needs of secondary school students.

1.2    STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

Guidance  and  counseling  services  are  widely  known  to  be beneficial in shaping the thinking and decision making capabilities of both students and even people  at  work  places.  To  have  such  services  in  places  where youths are growing without knowing what is expected of them such as the case of secondary schools which are been affected by high level of dropout. As a result of these, we can presume that there seems to be  little  or  no  traces  of  counseling  services  in  secondary  schools  in  Ijebu North Local Government which in essence should become a need for secondary school students. Incidences of  children  growing  without  any  direction  and  making regrettable mistakes are quite many. For example, several young people choosing to embrace early  marriage  while  others  select  subjects  that  do  not  have  appropriate  combination especially for joining A‟ Level. Presently the perceptions  of  teachers  and  students  are  not  known  and  as  far  as  I  know, there  is  less or  no study that has been conducted in Ijebu North Local Government in relation to the perceptions of teachers and students about the need for counseling to be offered in secondary schools. In this light will this study make its findings on students’ and teachers’ perception of counseling needs of secondary school students in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun State.

1.3    OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

The main objective of this study is to bring to fore the Students’ and teachers’ perception of counseling needs of secondary schools students in Ijebu North Local Government.  This study is set to achieve the following objectives;

1.     Analyze teachers and students perceptions about  guidance  and  counseling needs in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun state.

2.     To assess the difference in the perception of students in respect to their gender of counselling needs in Secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun state.

3.     To analyze the difference that exist in the perception of male and female teachers of counselling needs in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun state.

4.     To assess teachers and students perceptions on the availability of resources needed for counseling in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun state.

1.4    RESEARCH QUESTIONS

1.     Is there any differencebetween the perception of teachers’ and  students’ of counseling needs in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government.

2.     Are there differences between male and female students’ perception of counselling needs in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government.

3.     Are there differences between male and female Teachers’ perception of counselling need in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government.

1.5   HYPOTHESIS OF THE STUDY

H01: There is no significant difference between the perception of teachers’  and  students’ of counseling needs in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government.

H02: There is no significant difference between male and female students’ perception of counselling needs in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government.

H03: There is no significant difference between male and female Teachers’ perception of counselling needs in secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government.

1.6    SIGNIFICANCE OF THE RESEARCH

This  research  is  expected  to  be  significant  to  different  groups  of  people. To a greater extent, it is expected to be significant to the students, teachers and school management. However, other groups of people are expected to feel the impact of the findings of this research as well.

The findings could be useful  to  politicians  and  parent. Students  are  expected  to benefit  in  the  sense  that  most  of  them  are  currently  affected  by  the  teenage  pregnancies, absentees and drop-outs making them not focused. The results of this research could enable counseling services to be started in secondary schools since the need for counselling is noted,  hence  enable  students  to  reshape  their  lives  and  become  responsible  citizen of the country and the local government itself.

Through  the  establishment  of  counseling  services  in  schools,  there  would  be  an assurance that students would be trained to make sensible decisions and hence reduce failure rates by choosing what they like most and work hard towards achieving it. Additionally, with the  perception of teachers and students to be considered, the spreading of counseling  services to  schools becomes easy,  the  future  generation  will be assured  to  be  more productive by being more focused than the way they are now. Parents too stand to benefit in the sense that they may have less trouble looking after children. Children are expected to be shaped by counselors in conjunction with the religious leaders of  the  different  religions.  In the process,  the  students  are  expected  to  be  more productive compared to the way they are now because the study could change their perceptive toward counselling needs. By being more productive, it is expected that they  would  impress  their  parents  and  or  guardians  who  would  be  willing  to  involve  them (children) in most of their activities to boost the level of their productivity.

There is likelihood that the counselors may reap big in the process. This study could inform  policy  makers  on  the  need to implement  counseling  services  in  schools  which  may create  huge  employment  opportunity  for  those  people  in  the  profession  of counseling.  This would be good economically since it would uplift the standards of living of councilors and in a way it may increase spending levels of citizens bringing about increase in National Income Levels.

1.7    SCOPE OF THE STUDY

This study will be delimited to secondary schools in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun state.

1.8    DEFINITION OF TERMS

Perception:  Perception is defined in  Merriam-Webster’s  Online  Dictionary  as an “attitude or understanding based on what is observed or thought.” A teacher’s perception, like anyone else’s, is ultimately a product of his or her belief system.

Counseling  services:  It  is  the  interaction  that  comes  as  a  result  of  the  vocational relationship  between a  specialized  counselor  and  his  student  where  the  counselor  assists  the student  to  understand  himself  and  his  abilities  and  talents  to  achieve  self  and  environmental compatibility  in  order  to  attain  the  appropriate  degree  of  mental  health  in  light  of  the techniques and specialized skills of the guidance process.

Guidance:  Guidance  is  a  group  of  planned  services  that  include  counseling,  it  provides  the trainee  with  miscellaneous  information  to  upgrade  his  feeling  of  responsibility,  understand himself and know his abilities and provide guidance services to trainees.

Teachers: is a person who provide education for students.

Students: a person formally engaged in learning, especially one enrolled in a school.

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