PROJECT TOPIC : ATTITUDE OF PARENTS TOWARDS SEX EDUCATION IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN ISOKO SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF DELTA STATE
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Keywords:sex education in secondary schools, sex education in secondary
Background to the Study
The origin of the concept of sexuality education can be trace back to our ancestors who laid much emphasis on the care of self and the act of procreation. However sex education came into being in different countries at different times (Adepoju2005), in 1897 female Swedish doctor, Korolina Wilderstorm saw the need to educate the young ones especially the girls about sexuality hygiene as a way of information and protecting them from sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhoea and syphilis which were found to be common during the period.
In Nigeria, the evolution of sexuality education and its introduction the Nigerian schools become apparent as there was an urgent need to address adolescent’s productive health, sexual rights and sexuality issues (Adepoju 2005). The increasing need for sex education is also premised on the increasing health risk of adolescent who constitute over 30% of Nigerian population. By nature, adolescents are susceptible unplanned sex unprotected sex, sexual coercion, sexual violence, sexual transmitted diseases and HIV because they are un-informed or poorly informed about the implication of their reproductive behaviour and health risk especially from underage sexual practice and other anti-social practices. The Nigerian government approved the inclusion for comprehensive sexuality education in Nigeria in August 2001 (Madunaga 2005) sex education have a very devastating effect on the individual in our society. Some people have wrong ideas about sex education; this is not surprising considering the fact that many old people have their respective viewpoint about life (Adadevo 2009).
With the greater freedom of discussing of sex in our society and the earlier maturity of children today one would not consider the introduction of sex education to our teenager too early. The introduction of proper sex education to our youths will reduce many of the societal problems now facing us.
According to Obi (2007) the bringing together of boy and girls into the same school creates problems of physical contact and emotional involvement which eventually culminate in arousing sexuality.
A majority of Nigerian parents and teachers believe that sex education of their children is the parent’s responsibility while same others would welcome it introduction into the school curriculum. Simply put sex education deals with the processes and problems of reproductions designed to provide the individuals with understanding and control of their sex impulses and behaviour. It also deals with principles of both individual and group problems stemming from the biological fact that there two basic types of human being – males and females.
According to Okoro (2008), sex education is a comprehensive and systematic development programme extending from infancy to maturity. It is planned and directed to produce social and moral desirable sexual attitudes practices and personal behaviour.
Sex education aims to reduce risks of potentially negative outcome from sexual behaviour, equips learners with life skills and reduces the high level of drop out and unwanted pregnancies. It provides knowledge on how to prevent transmission of diseases such as HIV/AIDS and other health problems (Adeboye, 2006). Historically, the task of instructing about sex has been seen as the responsibility of parents. Today the term usually refers to classroom lessons about sex taught in schools. Sex education also aim at contributing to young people’ positive experience of their sexuality by enhancing the quality of their relationship. It offers sexuality programmes a aimed at providing accurate information about human sexuality for young people to develop and understand their values, attitude and beliefs about sexuality. This according to Ahmend (2009), is a means by which they are helped to protect themselves against abuse, exploitation, unwanted pregnancies and sexual transmitted diseases.
Undeniably the issue of sex education in schools has been very controversial with respect to the stage at which it should begin. In his essay “sex education in Nigerian society the skeleton in the cupboard’’. Ossai (2009) illustrates how his mother lost her teaching job in 2004 for teaching her class one (1) pupils the parts of the body. According to him the Nigerian government attitudes towards sex education is best described as ambivalent because though the subjects is officially part of the school curricula, it is not “effectively taught’’ in practice.
Ankomah (2011) explains that government want to satisfy their religious critics in society in the united states, critics have posed some question about the states usurpation of parental rights and responsibilities the adequacy of ethical instruction and the wisdom of imparting sexual information to immature mind (Sanders, 2008) but the intriguing question is this: do parents find it necessary to introduce their children, especially those at the lower level of education to sex education?
Sexuality education according to International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) is an education process designed to assist young people in their physical, social, emotional, and moral development as they prepared for adulthood, marriage, parenthood and ageing, as well as their social relationship in the socio-cultural context of family and society (IPPF, 1987). In another vein Action Health Incorporated (AHI) explained sexuality education as a planned process of education that foster the acquisition of factual information, the information of positive attitudes, beliefs and values as well as the development of skill to cope with the biological, psychological, socio-cultural and spiritual aspect of human sexuality (AHI2003). The need for the teaching of sex education in secondary schools cannot be over-emphasized. The need to actualize these sexual feelings became evidence when the students are among themselves. But the forceful preventive warning of the parents only serve temporary check on sexual tendencies amongst these youth. With these children sent to schools and no through knowledge of sex life a lot of problems easily come into play as the student jumps into their game of uncontrolled emotion. as a place for the dissemination of knowledge, secondary school become the local point for introduction of sex education, since present generation involves themselves in promiscuity and corruption there is the need for them to be taught what sexual relationship is with a lot of changes will occur in the life of the students, parents and community at large.
The knowledge of sex education will reduce the rate of casualty, which would have resulted from illegal procurement of abortion by quack doctors or nurses. Presently sex education programmes have been integrated into several secondary school education programmes.
Statement of the Problem
Ignorance about sex and its associated problems is prevalent in and among secondary school students. The lives of student are shattered with the passing of incorrect information among themselves, they get misled by others.
Today, the problems resulting from the lack of sex education among our youth are numerous; they are unwanted pregnancies, increase the rate of abortion, high incidence of sexually transmitted diseases and high rate of sexual promiscuity. All these have led to inability to concentrate, poor school performance, determination of mental health of students, high rate of school drop outs, increase in illiteracy and over population. Consequently the educational opportunity of Nigerian youths is greatly affected and this poses a greater loss to the society. Religious bodies view sex education as premature, dangerous and likely to lead to sexual promiscuity. To behavioural scientist the introduction of sex education is proper. However, despite the increasing sexual problems parents and school are still not providing teenager with proper knowledge of sex. This phenomenon has prompted the researcher into choosing this topic; the attitude of parents towards sex education in secondary schools.
The following research question have been raised to guide the study
- What is the difference between monogamous and polygamous parents in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools?
- What is the difference between high and low socio-economic status parents in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools?
- Is there any difference between parents from urban and rural areas in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools?
- What is the difference between literate and illiterate parents in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools?
The following hypothesis were formulated to guide the study.
- There is no significant difference between monogamous and polygamous parents in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools.
- There is no significant difference between parents of high and low socio-economic status in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools.
- There is significant difference between parents from urban and rural areas in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools.
- There is no significant difference between literate and illiterate parents in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools.
Purpose of the Study
The main purpose of this study is to investigate the attitude of parents towards sex education in secondary schools in Isoko South Local Government Area of Delta State.
Specifically, the study will focus on the following.
- The difference between monogamous and polygamous parents in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools.
- The difference between parents of high and low socio-economic status in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools.
- The difference between parents from urban and rural areas in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools.
- The difference between illiterate and literate parents in their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools.
Significance of the Study
The study will be of great benefit to parents, teachers, policy makers, school counsellor and educational administrators.
The study will provide parents with useful information about sex education in order to know best to guide the children on issues relating to sexuality education. The study will also provide teachers with information about sex education on how best to formulate policies relating to sexuality education.
The study will provide school counsellors with useful information about sex education and on how best to provide guidance and counselling to both students and the parents in order to sustain the interest of the parents thereby enhancing their attitude towards sex education in secondary schools.
The study will provide useful information to school administration about the usefulness of sex education in the school system in order to make the environment conducive for teaching of sex education in the school system.
Finally this study will help the local communities to appreciate the need for sex education and how to use sex education to tackle many problems that stems from sexual behaviour.
Scope and Delimitation of the Study
The study examines the attitude of parents towards sex education in secondary schools.
The study is limited to five (5) out of the forty-six (46) public and private secondary schools in Isoko South Local Government Area of Delta State.
Delimitation of Terms
Attitude: This is the thought or feelings that make individuals to act or behave as if they like or dislike something.
Parents: People who beget, give birth to, or nurture and raise a child.
Sex Education: This is institution on issues relating to human sexuality.
Secondary Schools: Schools or institutions which provide secondary education to children between the age of eleven (11) to eighteen (18) years after primary school.
Local Government Area: This is an administrative division of a country that a local government is responsible for.