The Need for Female Education in the 21ST Century African Society and Its Relevance to People

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Published on International Journal of Social, Politics & Humanities
Publication Date: April 21, 2019

Madu, T. T., Kolawole, O. P., Adeolodun, J. T. & Ayantunde, O. M.
M.A Christian Education, ECWA Theological Seminary Igbaja
Department of Religious Studies, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye
Department of Religious Studies, University of Ibadan, Ibadan
Nigeria

Journal Full Text PDF: The Need for Female Education in the 21ST Century African Society and Its Relevance to People (Study of Kpada in Patigi L.G.A. of Kwara State).

Abstract
It is a common knowledge that even at this time, in the 21st century, there are still some communities in the Nigerian society where some parents do not see the need to educate their female children. Many female children in this type of communities are being denied this privilege, i.e. education, which Adekunle Akinyemi, describes as having the aim of developing an individual such that he/she would be useful to himself or herself and the society at large. Little wonder it is said that, “if you educate a female child you have educated a nation”. The negligence of good and quality education of female children by some of our communities is sheer ignorance of what education stands for. Also, there are some who have been wrongly indoctrinated into having negative nation towards western education which they have come to believe that is an avenue to spoil one’s female child.

Keywords: Female, Education, Kpada, Nigeria & Society.

1. Introduction
Western education is seen as a means of exposing their female’s to western civilization that is capable of making them irresponsible and prostitute. Some people have decisively closed the doors of their hearts to the merit of education which provides the female child the ample opportunity of contributing her own quota, to the development of her immediate society and consequently to the larger society. Though this indifferent attitude to female education is not peculiar to the society, it is more prevalent among Kpada people hence the need for this research, it is obvious that this people prefer sending their children to early marriages otherwise known as “child marriage”, that they hail become grand-parents early in life. It is pathetic, though, to see some of these parents giving preference to male-child education over their female counterparts. They wrongly judge that educating a female child is an unprofitable venture as the girl will eventually get married to man one day who would enjoy the fruits of her education which was sponsored by her parents. This of course is nothing but sheer ignorance that has no base whatsoever. Therefore, this work is intended to finding out some of the factors that are responsible for this and see how solutions can be proffered and proper awareness is given to such parents that have these pre-conceived but wrong notions.

1.1 Statement of the Problem
The wrong notion by most parents in the community under study; (Kpada community) of not laying serious premium on the education of female children emanated from the indoctrination from the traditional and Islamic religions that predated Christianity in Kpada community. They have no value whatsoever for female education. The rate to which this deficiency is leading the female children into child marriages, house-maids, and untold hardships for lack of proper education that will warrant their self-dependency is alarming and deserves the attention of public opinion.
The pathetic plight of female children in Kpada community as they continually drop out from school at a very tender age either through teenage pregnancy or forceful marriages is another serious problem which is very pathetic. This is a matter of great concern as the future the female children in this category are being undermined and jeopardized. These and many other problems the researchers will try to address in the quest of proffering resolute solutions to the menace of those young and helpless girls who are being denied of the beauty of life, the awareness of self-worth and the eye-opener they could deduce from education if the opportunity is given them.

1.2 Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study is to examine and evaluate the problems affecting Kpada community in this 21st century in the areas of the neglect of some parents who see nothing good in having their female children educated. It is to investigate the factors that are responsible for this menace that is keeping most female children away from the confines of educational institutions. This study seeks to educate traditionalists and Islamic religion extremists the importance of female child education. This is because the disadvantages are all over the place. It would interest the readers to note. Therefore, this research is intended to do the following:
a. To evaluate the negative but seemingly cogent reasons of these adamant parents and the consequences of not educating their females. To correct the notion of some parents who feel it is a waste of time and resources to female child.
b. To find out the benefits attached to education and how it can be achieved by some of them to become pillars in their various communities.
c. To provide a platform by which some of these girls will see the need to get themselves educated at all possible means.
d. To evaluate whether role of governments to female education is positive or negative.
e. To give awareness to those who see no gain in female education, by letting them to know that it is a surest belt to greatness and making one to be self-reliant.
f. To examine that role of parents in supporting female education.

1.3 Significance of the Study
This research is tailored to investigate and evaluate the neglect and the attitudes that have led to the low standard of female education of Kpada community and its environs. Thus, this work is significance for some of the following reasons: Firstly, it alerts Christian parents on the need to educate their female children and wards regardless of the ways female education has been neglected in the community. Secondly, it seeks to inform female children who neither see the need for formal education that will make them better citizens in future. Thirdly, it is hoped that it will help Christian workers, parents, and Kpada community to provide awareness and counsels so that there could be a change of attitude toward good and quality education. Finally, the female children themselves will benefit from this study as there will be recommendations and discoveries that will make education more attractive to them despite their initial misconception neglect of it.

1.4 Scope of the Study
The study is limited to the selected people and some Christians in Patigi Local Government area of Kwara State and specifically among the people of Kpada community. The work is hereby limited to Kpada community in order for the researcher to and its immediate environs in other that it might have easy accessibility and authenticated responses on the subject matter.

1.5 Research Methodology
The researcher adopts survey and empirical methods for this work. Questionnaire designed to elicit the opinion of the people in Kpada. In view of this, 230 copies of questionnaires were administered, retrieved and analyzed.
Research Hypothesis
a. What is the cause of low level of female child education in Kpada community?
b. What are the possible consequential effect(s) of the low-level of female child education in the child and the community?
c. Are the people of Kpada ready and helping to change such belief and practice?
d. How can the denial of female child education be changed?

2. Education: General Concept
In discussing the need for female education in the 21st century, it will be in place if the general concept of education is discussed at least to some degree of understanding so that and reader can become familiar with what education is all about. Without the proper knowledge of education, one may find it very difficult to see any need for having the female child educated. This lack of proper understanding of what education is all about and what it does to the individual that is so educated may be part of the reasons many parents in the area under study are refusing to send their daughters and wards to school.
On this note, G.O. Olajide explains that the term education has several undertones and scholars tend to view it from different standpoints. Thus, she asserts that education as a concept does not have precise definition, because it means different things to different people. This means that everyone perceives education in view of their needs, ideas, mentality, time and worldview. Some view it as acquisition of reading skills that is the product of knowledge for people’s way of life with the aim of maintaining and preserving social structure in the society.
Therefore, the researcher finds it a matter of priority to delve into a few things about general education in order that the eyes of those who sees nothing in education will be opened, they too will be educated first and then will see how important it is to educate others.

2.1 The Beginning and Development of Education: Historical Background
According to Adeyinka and Adetoro, the word “Education” was derived from the Latin word ‘educare’ (educo, educare, educavi, education), meaning to ‘bring up’, ‘to lead out’ ‘to raise up’ ‘to educate’. This is to mean that ‘educare’ is acting in order to lead out fully all the potentiality of an individual. In other words, it means the process of helping the individual to grow and develop, the process of helping the individuals into the ways of life of the society, the process of initiating them into the society to which they have been to live, work and die.
In the same vein, the authors under observation explain further that, there can be many definitions to education as there are educational philosophers, scholars and students. They explain further from the works of the following authors: R.C. Longe holds that view that life is education and that education is life, meaning that the process of education spans through a man’s life. On the other hand, Plato believed that a good education consists in giving to the body and the soul of all the beauty and all the perfection of which they are capable. Furthermore, education is the art of the utilization of knowledge i.e. the process whereby the innate potentials of the individual is tapped and used for the benefit of the individual.
To Horace, education is process of character formation, while things (1966) sees it as the transformation of life, by the living to the living. To Oladele Taiwo education is the total efforts of a community to raise its social, economic and political standards of life, and to Majasan (1967), education is the process by which society passes its culture from one generation to another, while Ajayi holds that education should aim, not merely at creating and transferring technology, but also at developing people and resources. Babs Fafunwa, opined that the end objective of education is to produce an individual who is honest, respectful, skilled, cooperative and who would conform to the social order. Another popular definition is that of Carter Good (1959), he sees education as the art of making available to each generation the organized knowledge of the past, that is, the process by which the traditions and culture of a society are passed on from one generation to the other, from the older ones to the younger ones.
They concluded by saying that, education is a life-long process and aims at improving the skills needed to live meaningful lives and for an individual to adjust well to his immediate environment and the ultimate world or universe in which he finds himself. Education in essence can be said to be the process by which a sound mind in a sound body is developed. For education to worth its while, it must be able to produce a refined mind, body and soul. The main purpose of education, therefore, is to develop the individual so that he can be useful to himself, the family and the society in general.
The authors already under reference, explain further to differentiate between informal and formal education. They insist that informal education is the kind of education that goes on in the society every time, everywhere with every member of the society s student and learner. In this type of education, there is no specifically defined curriculum, no syllabus, no subject teachers, no classrooms, no examination, no certification or graduation. The community is the sole agent and beneficially of the own education. There is no limit to the content of instruction. This is the kind of education that was prevalent in the Spartan society and in the traditional African society.