1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Education law demands that each educational establishment should keep certain school records. These records are administrative records and teachers professional records. There are other records not required by law, but which are kept because they supply useful source of information not just for members of the school community but also for people outside it, these include employers who may be interested in having particular information about students’ academic achievements, parents may be interested in knowing how their children behave and perform in the school. Some ex-students may write for information about their career while in school, auditors may be interested in checking on details of financial transactions, inspectors may need to go through the record of work of a particular teacher who is facing disciplinary action, you too may have to collate some information about a student or member of staff to back up a case you are putting to the school Board. Weggant (2010) opined that records are information or data on a specific subject or activity collected and preserved for future use. The essence of record keeping is to enable the management or educators make effective decision and formulate relevant policies. An organization or any educational system that refuses to attach importance to proper record management would run into liquidation at the long run. It is the records of the past events or activities which were preserved that are used by administrators for planning and control of the present programmes or activities. Some records are mandatory, example, register of admission, register of attendance and fees, progress and withdrawal of students. Akubo (2015) noticed that records like student’s attendance register and student class record book should be properly documented. To enable the school administrator identify students who attend classes regularly there is need for proper record keeping. School Records like classroom re-enables a teacher or school administrator to identify a student who is a truant. Edem (2012) in agreement stated that proper record keeping on academic performance of students is imperative for academic decisions. The academic administrator will therefore, be able to determine the term and yearly academic performance of students and take necessary precautionary measures towards improving their academic performance where necessary. Apart from keeping records of students’ performance in tests, take home assignments, records of external performances like outside quizzes and debates are also important. Olaboye (2015) added that data collected from school records on students or pupils’ enrolment and school facilities can be used for strategic planning purposes. This can be analyzed in order to determine the number of teachers and other resources that would be needed by the school. Within the school, records would enhance planning for placement of students into higher classes. Proper records keeping improves restructured programmes such as lesson plans, schemes of work, and records of work. Teaching activities could be improved when records of what have been done and what have should be done within a period are outlined. Consequently, teachers would be advised, praised, encouraged and directed as appropriate. However, schools and classroom administrators should develop positive attitudes towards record keeping. Therefore, because of their usefulness, school records should be easily assessable but at the same time they should be safely kept where they cannot be easily destroyed. The usefulness of school records depends on their being accurate, complete and reliable. Institutions dealing with man and his activities need records to discharge their duties efficiently. That is why record keeping is very important in the school system. Taken together, records in the school system serve the following purposes. Records enable the principal and the teacher to understand the background nature, problems, and activities and progress of each child and with such an understating; the principal and the teacher are in a good position to help students. Proper keeping of records furnishes parents with data on the activities, problems and achievements of their children or wards. Some records provide students with information on the pattern of their progress. Through appropriate records, prospective employers often gather information on the background, nature, activities and achievements of applicants. If a student seeks transfer from one school to another, school records are needed to determine whether or not he should be accepted by the school to which he seeks transfer. Accurate records are crucial factor in the successful planning of the financial, physical and human resources in the school system by Ministry of Education and other relevant agencies. Commenting on the issue of records keeping in schools, Davis (2016) identified areas of school records keeping which include; historical records, financial records and academic records. He further stated that every record has its importance in helping to determine how school programmes will be planned. Fasasi (2010) observed that the major areas school records keeping affect are; information dissemination, accountability, teachers’ performance, students, students’ promotion. The researcher observed in the study area that keeping historical records of the school tends to make easier for the school to release or pass any information needed about students to parents, community and the public. Whereas keeping financial records tends to affect school accountability in terms of the need to know how much has come into school account and how much has been spent in the past and present. Without records, it is difficult to ascertain students academic performances, the total number of students in an institution or the total amount of fees collected in a particular term or session if past records or present are not kept. It is based on this note that Robinson in Idoko (2010) signifies that several people forget things easily and find it difficult to remember events in their lives, thus, the keeping of records helps to unravel a number of these problems that could arise from forgetting things. Thus, there is need for accurate record keeping because every organization depends on its records in order to check its successes and failures.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
There has been a recurring public discussion on the issue of records keeping by school administrators particularly in secondary schools in Chikun LGEA of Kaduna State. The series of complaints has been from teachers, students, guardians, parents and other educational stakeholders that record-keeping in secondary schools is very porous, time-consuming and the records are at times, not available. According to the stakeholders, the total neglect of records keeping is seriously affecting the management of schools in terms of proper planning of future academic programmes. If the secondary level is to perform well, there is need for properly kept records as these will make the management efficient and effective. Academic failures among secondary school students have been the subject of interest in Chikun LGEA. Students drop out due to poor academic performance as early as after their enrolment. Many interested parties' debate and try to find reasons for this poor performance. Consequently, the ability to predict a student's performance could be useful in many ways to stakeholders of secondary schools. Observation by the researcher has shown that this situation has not been adequately investigated in the study area. There is therefore a felt need by the researcher to investigate into the possible impact of record keeping on effective management in the study area. The problem of this study stated in a question form is therefore; how does school record has effect on secondary school students in Chikun LGEA of Kaduna State.
1.3 AIMS OF THE STUDY
The major purpose of this study is to examine the effect of school records on the academic performance of secondary school students. Other general objectives of the study are:
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESES
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This study would be of immense benefit to school administrators and teachers in Kaduna State since it would enlighten the administrators on the necessity of adopting modern system of record keeping through the use of improved technologies. The findings may provide useful statistics for education planning, administration and management. Solution to problems of data collection, processing and utilization is provided through statistic analysis of information from records kept. The study also assists education inspectors/supervisors to assess students and teachers performance through available records that are authentically produce and adequately rich in content. It also enhances teacher performance through interaction with inspectors/supervisors during school inspection process. The study would provide some useful hints to school administrators on how to keep students’ academic records so as to be able to retrieve them as at when required. To the teacher, the findings of the study would help them to access students’ records so as to enable them organize remedial lesson for them where necessary. The findings of the study would enable school administrators to adopt proper technique of keeping schools record. This research will also be relevant to researchers as a source of material for further research in the body of knowledge.
1.7 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study is based on the effect of school records on the academic performance of secondary school students in Chikun LGEA of Kaduna state.
1.8 LIMITATION OF STUDY
Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
1.9 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Records: Records are an items or collection of data that is develop as a result of series of activities that takes place over period of time. It is anything which is recorded in written, soft or hard copy for future reference Records as defined by the American Heritage Dictionary (2015) and cited by Onitade (2017), are information or data on a particular subject collected and preserved. This definition implies that any processed or unprocessed datum that is collected and kept for future use constitutes a “record”.
School Records: School records are official documents, books and files containing essential and crucial information of actions and events which are kept and preserved in the school office for utilization and retrieval of information when needed. Such records are kept by principals, teachers, councillors or administrative staff. School records are therefore information or data collected on various aspects of school and preserved for future use. School record serves as bank in which information is deposited and kept with the hope of retrieving and utilizing in the future
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