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PROJECT TOPIC- APPLICATION OF MANAGEMENT BY OBJECTIVE (MBO) TECHNIQUES IN THE MANAGEMENT OF SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN EBONYI STATE

PROJECT TOPIC- APPLICATION OF MANAGEMENT BY OBJECTIVE (MBO) TECHNIQUES IN THE MANAGEMENT OF SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN EBONYI STATE

Abstract

This study, Application of Management by Objective (MBO) Technique in the Management of Secondary Schools in Ebonyi State was motivated by the need to ascertain the extent principals use management by objective in secondary schools. It appears doubtful whether principals apply expected management by objective in handling challenges to appreciable extent in their schools. This study therefore examined the extent to which principals use management by objective in the administration of schools in Ebonyi State. Six research questions and five null hypotheses guided the study. The research design adopted for the study was the` descriptive survey research design. The sample comprised 68 principals and 136 vice principals totaling 204. All the principals and vice principals were studied because` the population was not large. The population therefore served as the sample. A structured questionnaire on application of management by objective techniques in the management of secondary schools (AMOTMSS) was used for data collection. Data collected were analyzed using mean ( ) and standard deviation (SD) to answer the research questions and t-test statistics at 0.05 level of significance for the hypotheses. The result of the findings indicate that principals always apply management by objective techniques in instructional programme in secondary schools in Ebonyi State; principals always apply management by objective techniques in students’ and staff management; that principals sometimes apply management by objective in the management of school community relationship. Again, the study revealed that there is significant difference between the mean ratings of male and female principals in the application of management by objective in secondary schools in Ebonyi State. Based on the findings, the study recommends that ` principals should be oriented towards applying management by objective techniques in the management of school community relationship. This will sustain strong relationship between the school and the community for a better teaching and learning in the school. Secondly, Ministry of Education should constantly organize workshop and seminars where management functions of the school principals and vice` principals will be discussed. Such workshops and seminars should be made compulsory for both principals and their vice as to highlight the place of management by objective in the overall success of the school.

 

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to the Study

 

Education in all ramifications is the most important instrument of social change in any society. Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN, 2012) maintains that education is a veritable tool for social change, national integration and development. In the same line of thought, Oyibe and Oketa (2012:76) added that “education is a social process whereby the individual acquires skills and knowledge for successful living in a society”. No wonder Federal Republic of Nigeria (FRN, 2004:9) maintains that “efforts shall be made to relate education to overall needs of the Nigerian society”.

There is no doubt that extent to which the above goals of the Federal Government of Nigeria are achieved in Nigeria depends largely on the quality of education provided to the citizenry. In line with the above assertions, Ukaonu in Aguokogbuo (2000) opined that education is a social process whereby the individual is prepared for successful participation in social relationship. It appears clear that education is an indispensable instrument not only to an individual but also for the development of a nation.

Therefore, the soundness of a nation’s economy, politics and social values mostly depends on the amount of qualitative and quantitative education she could offer to her citizens. Nigeria advocates for the philosophy of education that could cater for the needs of her citizens. Olagbeye (2006) notedthat economic studies have shown that the rate of return to a nation from investment in education is greater than that from any form of investment.

The broad goals of Nigerian secondary education as specified in the National Policy on Education (FRN, 2004) are aimed at preparing students for useful living within the society and higher education. Babalola (2004) observed that achieving these aims have remained largely elusive in school system due to problems of teachers’ and students’ management: finance, infrastructures, motivation, curriculum and supervision and lack of information and technology facilities.

As a result, principals as school managers continue to be subjected to blames that the complex task they perform are not efficiently and effectively channeled towards providing education necessary for the world of today and the future (Adebola, 2006). Thus, for the goals of secondary education to be achieved, effective and efficient management is therefore needed. Management is the coordination of human and material resources to achieve pre-determine objectives, it is also accomplished by performing such functions as planning, organizing, staffing, directing, coordinating, decision making and budgeting.

Nwosu (2008) defined management as the act or process of working with and through people by utilizing available position to achieve a specified goal. According to Tirozzi (2004), there are many management techniques in literature which school managers can use in management of their schools. Management technique is simply a method or technique used to perfect performance and a way things should be done.

Major management techniques, according to Parkin (2010) and Gordon (2008) included management by objectives (MBO); programme evaluated and review technique (PERT),planning, programming, managing and budgeting system (PPMBS) and the Delphi technique. According to Enyi (2002), MBO is very useful in personnel management and task performance. Mullins (2010) also noted that PERT is used for programme planning while PPMBS is a management technique for used for financial planning and management.

He further states that Delphi technique is most appropriate for organizational improvement. Since MBO is a powerful tool for personnel management and task performance in school organization (Enyi, 2002), the major focus of this study is on MBO. It also integrates individual needs with organizational goals effectively. In order to understand fully the meaning of MBO, it is better to start by defining the term, “objectives”.

Objectives may be seen as the reason for establishing an institution or organization. Objectives are statement of intent that is attainable, specific, and measurable. It is also an outcome statement that is consistent with and grows out of a related goals statement. School is a typical example of a service-oriented institution in which emerges a head popularly known and address as principal who helps to realize its objectives.

MBO is a management technique, which has all along been associated with private and public sectors like companies and industries. NBC as a management technique is very innovative, efficient, progressive, and democratic in personnel and task performance in school organization (Enyi, 2002). Nwosu (2008) was the view that management by objectives (MBO) should be seen as a result-oriented management technique in which all stakeholders participate actively often cooperatively in all-salient activities of an organization for purposes of achieving optimal result. It also relies on defining of objectives for each employee and then comparing and directing, evaluating their performances against the objectives that have been set. Blanchard and Hersey (2008:9) defined MBO as:

A process whereby the superior and the subordinate workers of an organization jointly identifyits common goals, define each individual’s major area of responsibility in terms of the results expected of him and use these measure as guides for operating the unit and assessing the contribution of its members.

 

Drucker (2006) highlighted the principles of MBO as consisting of cascading of organizational goals and objectives; specific objective for each member, participative decision-making, explicit time period and performance evaluation and feedback. MBO is thus a technique which enables organization to set and achieve their objectives by planning, organizing, and controlling their human and materials resources meaningfully. Nwosu (2008) also defined MBO as a technique of management that attempts to relate the organizational goals to individual performance and development through the involvement of all levels of management. Principals of secondary schools use MBO to strategize and plan school goals and mission, raise and manage funds, coordinate staff/student activities, implement educational policies and enhance curriculum implementation in line with set objectives. They also manage school-community relations effectively, organize time, provide supportive services and evaluate school programmes in line with educational objectives.

According to Okunamiri, (2002), the application of MBO in schools can lead to the transformation of the resources of the schools in order to bring about realization of school objectives. Studies have also shown that application of MBO in schools can lead to institutional transformation and realization of school objective (Oghuvbu, 2008). On the application of MBO in the university to achieve its objective as to “eradication of cultism”. Nwosu (2008:89) opined that the vice-chancellor coordinates the activities of various units or departments within the system for the purpose of achieving its objectives. According to Nwosu, these may include:

  1. Lecturers who may be serving clandestinely as patrons of the fraternities and sororities.
  2. The religious leaders who through homilies, fellowship, crusades etc may return erring students to noble path of rectitude.
  3. The student affairs officer or dean of student affairs who is working with students and supervisory councilors.

The astute manager strived to coordinate efforts of each department or individual while allowing them leverage to do so. With MBO, it was all hands on deck, cultism became gradually eradicated and the university objective is achieved (Nwosu, 2008:90). Many challenges and inadequacies in the Nigerian education system in general and EbonyiState in particular provide the rationale for advocating that principals should utilize MBO in their task performance areas. MBO can be a very efficient, effective and innovative technique in school system, for solving the educational problems and inadequacies in Ebonyi States secondary schools (Onah, 2001). These problems and inadequacies tend to mar the progress of school system and bring chaos and conflict.

In the EbonyiState, there has been a public outcry over the air concerning perceived problems and inadequacies in schools such as poor academic performance, fallen standard of education and also gross indiscipline due to ineffective teaching and learning and lack of qualitative education (Udegbe, 2000). Watching clearly the situations in some schools in EbonyiState, it appears that some of the secondary school principals in So Ebonyi State are involved in acts of indiscipline such as moral laxity, absenteeism, lateness to work and examination malpractices.

Gwacham (2005) observes that some principals hardly venture to go near the classroom to supervise, guide, help, direct, and motivate teachers as expected for effective curriculum delivery. As if that is not enough, Nnabuife (2010) adds that some secondary school staffs are also involved in some sharp practices like examination malpractices which negate the good intentions of secondary education and frustrate hopes and aspirations of the people.

Explaining further, Udegbe (2000) maintains that common indiscipline behaviour by teachers in South East States also include lack of commitment to duty, absenteeism from school and lessons without permission, lateness, non-preparation of lesson notes, lip- service to continuous assessment, failure to mark students assignments, failure to fill school records like registers, diaries, attendance and movement books, and sexual immorality.

Many students in secondary schools in EbonyiState also flout school rules and regulations as observed by principals and teachers. They are also leave the compound without permission, possession of dangerous weapons, stealing, putting in wrong uniforms, extortion of money, examination malpractices, indecent dressing, cultism, dishonesty, bullying and moral laxity (Egboka, 2008).

If principals of secondary schools in EbonyiStateutilizes MBO technique as expected in their planning and administration, this may improve standard of education, morale, academic excellence, and the schools will go back to their former glory. Nwankwo (1981) blames the existence of these management problems in the school system on lack of effective management techniques in education which are obstacles to the achievement of educational goals.

Onu (1985) posited that principals may have more responsibilities as guardians of quality within the educational system in which they will be accountable for this quality especially in their task performance. Principals’ tasks are the activities through which school principals arrange and coordinate the resources available in their schools, for the purpose of achieving the goals of the educational system. These principals are supposed to put in their best in performing these tasks.

Furthermore, Anukam and Anukam (2006), classified the basic tasks performed by school principals in school management in Nigeria as management of instructional programmes, staff personnel management, students’ personnel management and management of school-community relationship. Management by objectives could be adopted in carrying out each of the above task areas.

According to Nwosu (2007), the task of instructional programmes is the first and most important responsibility of a principal. It refers to the activities through which a principal develops clear objectives for curriculum implementation, provides direction and expert advice on developments of learning, teaching and assessments. In staff personnel management, Anukam and Anukam (2006) note that principals are expected to provide staff with suitable support to plan, organize, coordinate and implement the objectives of the school, mentor staff, encourage staff participation and collaboration in decision-making, encourage professional development and effective curriculum delivery and resolve conflicts among staff.

Emetarom (1991) states that the tasks of students’ personnel management refers to the activities of the principal that inspires and stimulates students to pursue excellent performances, diagnoses students’ educational problems and facilitates conducive learning environment for students. Another task of principals is the task of financial management which refers to accountability and prudence in the disbursement of funds for stationeries, programmes and allowances and so on.

The task of school infrastructure management covers the tasks of maintenance of school facilities, allocation of instructional materials and equipments needed for teaching and learning and supervising the utilization of these resources by staff and students. These tasks constitute the core of successful management (Jaiyeoba, 2004). Again, the task or role of principal in the development of school community relationship should center on such activities as working with the Parents-Teachers Association in setting school objectives, making the community member aware of the school programmes, establishing rapport with civic groups, becoming involved in community improvement projects (Obiechina, 2006).

It is necessary that principals utilize MBO in their tasks performance. In the secondary school system, the principal is the chief executive of the school. He/she is the only person whose activities extend beyond the individual classroom. He/she monitors and supervises curricular and extracurricular activities of the school. There are still some variations and different ideas in method of managing schools between male and female principals.

In these situations, values and vision of principals are not the same (Archer & Lloyd, 2005). In leadership and management studies, the gender perspective is of outstanding importance. Research showed that there are gender stereotype associated with leadership and management (Shakeshaft, 2009). In social situations, Ozga (2003) posits that female or women principals are generally perceived as more caring, affinitive, democratic, participative, less hierarchical, tolerant, intuitive and creative.

In order hand, Qzga sees male or men principals as being task-oriented, motivating, directive, dominating, bureaucratic and assertive. Principals as education leaders direct and guide others towards goal achievement. There is no viable, systematic rationale for principal to follow which provides the basis through which his performance can be evaluated. (Jacobson, Logsdon, & Wiegmann, 2003:18).

The researcher is of the view that a school manager whether male or female must endeavour to exert positive influence, since he/she takes blames for any defaulting and glory for success. This is more pronounced according to the researcher in educational institutions, where the results are often intangible and also delayed until several years after the student must have left the educational institution.

Moreover, community studies have shown that some identify outstanding educational secondary schools which are called “beacons of brilliants” are mostly managed by male principals while at the other end spectrum, some very poor schools called “potholes of pestilence” are mostly manned by female principals (Jacobson et al, 2003:18). In the beacons of brilliant schools, the principals are charismatic leaders, and instill their teachers with enthusiasm, motivate them, involve them also in decision making process of the school and make use of their input or contributions towards the effective and smooth running of the school.

These male principals are confident and could provide relevant and purposeful earning without learning on traditional crutches. They also accept responsibilities as those with vision and mission rather than those of a job. The can distinguish between long and short term educational goals. These male principals are keep to school programmes, with open environment and supervise curricular and extra-curricular activities efficiently, the female principals on the other hand, are generally looked upon as running schools with “potholes of pestilence” which are the result of weak leadership and official neglect.

The school buildings are dirty and in state of disrepair which is very unconducive for learning with close environment. If control is at all maintained, fear is one of the main control strategies employed. The school is poorly staffed and equipped. The instructional programmes are traditional, ritualistic and poorly related to students needs. These schools are characterized by lack of enthusiasm, squalor and ineffectiveness through out. The principal’s attitude is that of merely looking always forward to relief and release.

Considering the above statement, it is likely that gender may have some impact in the use of management techniques such as MBO. Moreover, principals are given appointment or posted to schools whether male or female as the case may be. They may be posted to boys or girl’s school or even coeducational schools irrespective of their gender. So, it becomes imperative to investigate empirically whether there are some variations in principals’ utilization of MBO in secondary school management as regards gender.

Studies are yet to establish the extent principals in EbonyiState use MBO in secondary schools (Nwosu, 2007). This is a research area that has not been investigated. The inability of previous studies to show whether principals in EbonyiState use MBO in their task performance or the extent to which they use the technique in their schools has created a gap in knowledge. This gap needs to be filled in order to realize the goals of secondary education in the area. This study is therefore motivated by the need to ascertain the extent principals use MBO in secondary schools in EbonyiState of Nigeria. Proper use of MBO by principals in their tasks performance may likely results in the achievement of goals of secondary education (Fabumni, 2004).

PROJECT TOPIC- APPLICATION OF MANAGEMENT BY OBJECTIVE (MBO) TECHNIQUES IN THE MANAGEMENT OF SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN EBONYI STATE

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Most principals of South East States secondary schools are still faced with multiplicity of problems and challenges in the performance of their multifarious task. Among the major problems and challenges of the principals are role expectations such as leadership roles, accountability, and inadequate authority and power to function. It is doubtful whether these principals apply management by objective (MBO) in handling these challenges to an appreciable extent.

There are reports, observations, and also outcry over poor school management in South East States. Udegbe (2000) and Nwosu (2008) are of the view that principals, teachers, and even students indulge in acts of gross indiscipline such as non-challant attitude to work, lateness, absenteeism to work, non-compliance with directives, truancy, illegal collection of fees and examination malpractices etc.

Gwacham (2005) observed that some principals hardly venture to go near the classroom to supervise, guide, direct, and motivate teachers for effective curriculum delivery. Some other problems prevalent in secondary schools are: problems of inadequate finance, lack of motivation, and lack of information and communication technology facilities (ICT) and so on in the administration of the school system.

These deficiencies impact negatively on quality learning such that the students are not even prepared for useful living or gaining admission to higher education as stipulated by secondary school educational objectives. Consequently, there is generally fallen standard of education and poor performance as a result of ineffective teaching and learning (Nnabuife, 2010). In addition to the above, Cnah (2001) noted that most principals and staff of secondary schools in South East lack co-operative efforts needed to maintain good school organization.

Management of many secondary schools in the area leaves much to be desired in terms of cohesion and understanding. Some principals communicate with their staff as if the staffs are slaves and not colleagues (Nwachukwu, 1988 and Obi, 1997). Some molest staff about, shout at them, criticize them even in front of students and go to the extent of even abusing them out rightly. During supervision, many principals criticize and condemn teachers in front of the students.

Nworah (2005) observed that some school heads hoard vital information from staff and use unclear statements in delegating tasks. The result is role ambiguity and role conflict that hinder school administration. However, with all these inadequacies and problems surrounding schools, there exists a big gap, such as lapses or deficiencies between what the administrative position of secondary schools ought to be and what it is currently. One still wonders and questions whether principals’ use MBO in their schools in the EbonyiState of Nigeria. These state of affairs agitated the mind of the researcher and gives rise to this study. So, it becomes crucial to investigate the principals’ use of MBO in school management in secondary schools in EbonyiState.

1.3 Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study was to ascertain the extent of principals’ apply management by objectives (MBO) in management of secondary schools in EbonyiState. Specifically, the study focuses on ascertaining:

  1. The extent principals apply MBO in management of secondary schools instructional programmes in EbonyiState.
  2. The extent secondary school principals apply MBO in personnel management in EbonyiState.
  3. The extent secondary school principals apply MBO in school financial management in EbonyiState.
  4. The extent secondary school principals apply MBO in the management of school plants in EbonyiState.
  5. The extent secondary school principals apply MBO in the management of school-community relationship in EbonyiState.
  6. The extent male and female secondary school principals differ in their application of management by objective (MBO) in school management in EbonyiState.

1.4 Significance of the Study

This study will hopefully to the advancement of management theories and task performance in schools since the aim of every educational researcher is geared towards creating a positive landmark in the system. The school managers of secondary schools, teachers, students, policy-makers and future researchers who are making efforts for school improvement will benefit from this study. This study may make meaningful contributions in the following areas:

The findings of this study can assist school managers or principals who do not make use of this innovative technique MBO in the execution of their tasks to be positively sensitized and mobilized. It may help to understand how secondary school principals in EbonyiState utilize MBO in the performance of their tasks, they will also gain knowledge that may help them become effective administrators through the use of MBO in task performance.

Teachers irrespective of gender will also benefit from this study, because an effective management technique of a school principal like MBO will motivate the teacher to be more duty conscious, create a good working environment, better participation in decision-making, and good relationship between the staff, students and management which are all aimed at achievement of organizational goals/objectives between a specified period.

Consequently, the study can equally boost the morale of teachers; improve the academic standard, progress of teachers and educational system as a whole. Students would equally benefit from this study in the sense that all educational goals and endeavours are aimed at enhancing meaningful teaching and learning, and invariably boos their general performance as product of school system. Since MBO is result-oriented, and uses measurable objective technique, it would make the students more conscious to achieve the goals and objectives of the school and that of National Policy on education in school environment where principals and teachers work co-operatively for the achievement of school goals.

In addition, principals’ proper use of MBO would help the students to be enthusiastic in school activities, and conform to school rules and regulations since they are involved in decision making process of the school. This would give an insight to educationist and policy makers to include this important element of efficient management technique in the training and remedial programmes through seminars, workshop, lectures organized for school principals.

The study would serve as a literature for future researchers and serve as a springboard for further research studies into principals’ use of MBO in school management in secondary schools. It would also improve our technologies-oriented educational system in line with the recent out-cry of parents, community and society at large that quantity in education be matched with quality.

In conclusion, whatever recommendation arising from findings of this study would positively affect all in the school system as mentioned earlier and all the stakeholders of education. In fact, the recommendation from the result of this study would help principals improve on their management techniques, enhance achievement and also help to realize the vision of Millennium Development Goals (MDGS) which specifies academic excellence in school system in 2020.

1.5 Scope of the Study

The content of the study covered five major tasks performance areas in the management of secondary schools in which the principals are always involved. There are many tasks areas for school principals, but this study would be delimited to only task areas namely: management of instructional programmes, personnel management, school financial management and school infrastructural management and management of school-community relationship.

The variables to be investigated in the study include MBO and task performance areas in the management of secondary schools in Ebonyi State. MBO is the independent variable while task performance areas are the dependent variable. The scope would also include gender, as gender tends to have an impact in principals attitude towards use of management techniques in school management.

Geographically, the scope of this study was limited to Ebonyi State of Nigeria. All the public secondary schools in the three education zones of the state will be studied. The researcher decided to use Ebonyi State because he lives and works in EbonyiState and as a result, he is familiar with the operations of secondary education in the area.

1.6 Research Questions

The following research questions were formulated to guide the conduct of this study:

  1. How often do principals apply management by objective (MBO) in management of instructional programme in secondary schools in Ebonyi State?
  2. How often do principals apply MBO in management of students in secondary schools in Ebonyi State?
  3. How often do principals apply MBO in management of staff in secondary schools in Ebonyi State?
  4. How often do principals apply MBO in school infrastructure management in secondary schools in Ebonyi State?
  5. How often do principals apply MBO in school financial management in secondary schools in Ebonyi State?
  6. How often do principals apply MBO in management of school-community relationship in secondary schools in EbonyiState?

1.7 Null Hypotheses

          The following hypotheses were formulated to guide the study and tested at 0.05 level of significance.

Ho1:   There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of male and female principals on the extent of application of MBO in management of secondary school instructional programmes in Ebonyi State.

Ho2:   There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of male and female secondary school principals on the extent of application of MBO in personnel management in Ebony State.

Ho3:   There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of male and female secondary school principals on the extent of application of MBO in school financial management in Ebonyi State.

Ho4:   There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of male and female secondary school principals on the extent of application of MBO in the management of school plants in Ebonyi State.

Ho5:   There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of male and female secondary school principals on the extent of application of MBO in the management of school- community relationship in Ebonyi State.

PROJECT TOPIC- APPLICATION OF MANAGEMENT BY OBJECTIVE (MBO) TECHNIQUES IN THE MANAGEMENT OF SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN EBONYI STATE

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