RELIGIOUS EDUCATION AND MORAL DECADENCE IN NIGERIA IMPLICATION ON JUNIOR SECONDARY SCHOOL ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE
- Background to the study
Every society across the world believes that religious education and moral awareness play a dominant role in behavioural setting.
Since majority of people associate child bearing with god and goddess there is no doubt that religious sentiment has crept into the issue.
The degree of moral decadence is a concern to deal with people in the society. In the name of civilization, the moral standard of the people has fallen. If we go into the family level, the example of such moral decline would be found. Children are disobeying their parents and elderly ones. The fulfillment of a saying has come in our generation “but children will curse their fathers and will not bless their mothers. They are not cleansed of their filthiness. Their eyes are full of lusts and their eye lids lifted high”.
Coming down to the school, no doubts, the degree of indiscipline in Ikere is worries-some. There are disobedience at all levels. Some are vandals, many of them have formed bad companies and have their characters corrupted. Crimes, such as smoking, drinking of alcohol, examination malpractices, truants, bully and a host of others. In their immoral practices among the matured ones, many have been shamefully put into family ways.
It is amazing to find out that the youths of these days are morally bankrupt. Our society has witnessed a tremendous deterioration in its moral, social and educational values, especially among the youths, (Chima, 2010). However, the issue of moral decadence in our society has become a very controversial issue because the society seemed not to know the disparity between what is morally right or wrong. Ugwu (2010:46) described morality as “the astuteness of one’s conduct and behaviour which enhances good conduct and fair relationship.
Muraino and Ugwumba (2014) asserted that Morality is collectively upholding of certain beliefs, ideas, values and behaviours, rules and regulations which are considered good, right and acceptable by the society and to which members of the society are bound. Gert (2012), posited that the descriptive definition of morality explains moral as set of conduct put forward by any group; including a society; and the normative definition which is based on the idea that what is moral should have a code of conduct, that is put forward by a society and that it should be accepted as a guide to behaviour by members of that society. Therefore, from the above definitions, morality seems to be a set of code of conducts put forward by any group, society or nation that is acceptable by members of the group.
Odeh (2013) asserted that moral decadence is the failure to uphold sound morality in our society. Muraino and Ugwumba (2014) asserted that moral decadence is the process of behaving in a way that shows low moral standards. It means gross reduction in the moral values in a particular society. Thus, moral decadence appears to be a fall’ in the moral standard of the society. It seems to be deterioration or a collapse in upholding our societal values, beliefs, norms and ethical standards.
Furthermore, despite the government’s attempts at promoting moral uprightness in Nigerian citizens through the inauguration of programmes like War Against Indiscipline (W AI), Independent corrupt practices and other related offences commission (ICPC) and Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) to mention but a few, the society has remained morally decayed (Muraino, Abdulkadir and Belgore, 2012). In the other hand, Saheed (2013), stated that there is a dire need to re-orientate the entire populace parents as well as their children, all need to have a new focus. Religious groups too have the social responsibility to reinstate faith in the divine. Religious clerics must through personal conduct rebuild confidence in moral uprightness. The school system must not only inculcate discipline in the students and teachers through counselling, morality must be built into the curriculum for maximum impact.
This study have been critically design to look into this. It is based on comprehensive observation of people’s idea and views. It is a comprehensive study that analysed advantages as well as the limitation of moral education.
- Statement of problems
There are many outcries against immorality in the Nigerian society today. The
level of indiscipline and crime waves among the youths has seriously escalated in
geometric progression. Moral decadence in the Nigerian society today is beyond sexual perversion. From general observations, the severity of immoral actions ranges from “simple cheating” at school to drug abuse, murder and the exhibition of other anti-social behaviours. The depth of the problem has reached a point where common decency can no longer be described as common. For instance, decent people are honest and behave in a way that most people approve of, but in our society today, honesty as a virtue most especially among our youths, is not as common as it was in years past and this in one way or the other, has affected the development of the society.
Educational institutions have become comfortable dens for gangsters, cultists and prostitutes. Wearing of “decorated rags” and seductive attires has become a fad for ladies, and the virtue of virginity is becoming unthinkable and abominable. Examination malpractice, which is aided by parents and teachers, has become common place in Nigerian schools. This entails that students rely on fraudulent means to earn certificates, thereby giving little or no regard to hard work.
Christian religious knowledge like other subject is expected to teach morals to students within the school environment and outside the school system. But for sometimes now the behavior of students in secondary school. If not the entire educational sector has remained disappointing, this development has become worrisome to many parents, people are now wondering what moral instructions students are now receiving in the schools in attempt to correct this
Keeping in view the above rationale, a study was conducted to find out the religious education and moral decadence in Nigeria impicationnfor academic performance
The purpose of the study
The major objective of this study is investigate religious education and moral decadence in Nigeria implication for junior secondary school students academic performance in Eleme local government area of river state
The specific objective is
- To determine implication of moral decadence on students academic performance
- To find out forms of moral decadence on secondary school students in river state
- To find out the causes of moral decadence among secondary school students
- To determine the strategies for restoring morality among secondary school students in river State
1 What are the implication of moral decadence on studetns academic performance>
2 What are the forms of moral decadence among secondary school students in River State?
3 What are the causes of moral decadence among secondary school students in river State?
4 What are the strategies for restoring morality among secondary school students in riverState?
Significant of the study
- The study may be helpful for curriculum developers in religious studies for:
- Selecting the suitable religious subject matter and concepts appropriate to the age of students.
- Removing the deficiencies of curriculum, which lead to the gap between knowledge and practice.
- To exploit the optimal age for religious learning and moral development.
- It will help teachers and practitioners in religious studies.
- To adopt appropriate strategies to inculcate moral values in the classroom and evaluate the affective and behavioural output of students at three age stages.
- To control social problems stemming from moral disorders on the part of students by suggesting appropriate religious subject matter during early childhood and adolescence.
- It will contribute to the sociologists and educationists to correspond age and moral behavior at different stages and understand the causes of moral disorders and social problems.
- It will provide related information for researcher scholars interested in moral development and religious studies.
Delimitations of the study
The study was delimited to:
- Government schools for the students studying one subject religious education.
- Ten moral concepts as: truthfulness, sincerity, patience, honesty, kindness to others, courage, just and generous behavior towards parents and the elderly, poor and needy, enemies and mankind generally.
Definition of terms
MORAL: This is a standard of behaviour about right and wrong.
EDUCATION: Is a development of character and mental power.
AWARENESS: Having knowledge or realization of the gravity of the situation.
CHARACTER: This means mental or moral qualities that make one person or race different from others.
CHARITY: This is the care of one’s fellow human being.
VALUE: The degree of importance or goods that is considered to be a fair equivalent for something else.