INFLUENCE ON GOVERNMENT BUDGET ALLOCATION ON THE ADMINISTRATION OF SECONDARY SCHOOL IN BASSA LOCAL GOVERNMENT OF PLATEAU STATE

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ABSTRACT

Amid the need to foster efficiency and effectiveness in schools, government budget allocation has been embraced by public secondary schools in Plateau State. Key of which is to compel planning and to provide performance measurement criteria. Therefore, this study sought to assess the effect of government budget allocation on the administration of public secondary schools in the Bassa local government area. The study conducted a survey involving two respondents from each of the 4 public secondary schools in the Bassa local government area. A structured questionnaire was used to collect primary data. The results of the study indicated that government budget allocation had a strong positive effect on the administration of public secondary schools.

CHAPTERONE

1.1     BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

The major themes that emerge in assessing school effectiveness have included a focus on teaching and learning, leadership, creating an information-rich environment, creating a positive school culture, building a learning community, continuous professional development, involving parents, and external support and resources (Engel, et al, 2010). In Plateau State Education Master Plan for Education and Training, it is argued that quality is not merely passing of examinations or certification, but the development of the independent, analytical, creative potential of the individual, including critical imagination, spiritual and ethical values. Based on the above Master Plan’s, it is the view that quality education should shift from merely passing examinations to include the discovery of talents, development of analytical, cognitive and creative potential; enhanced by efficient and effective management and prudent usage of resources (Ngware et al, 2006). Thus, with a compelling case to foster increased levels of efficiency and effectiveness in all schools, school budgets have gained a more vital interest.

According to Horngren and Foster (2006), a budget is a quantitative expression of a proposed plan of action by management for a future time period and is an aid to the coordination and implementation of the plan. It is a comprehensive expression of management’s operating and financial plans for a future time period and it is usually summarized in a set of budgeted financial statements. The importance of budgets in helping fulfil the organization’s goals has been indicated by Dugdale & Lyne (2010) as being the ability to measure and report financial information that is mission-critical for the organization. Besides, performance measures are a central component of management control systems. Making good planning and control decisions requires information about how different subunits of the organization have performed. To be effective, performance measures which include both financial and non-financial measures must motivate managers and employees at all levels of the organization to strive towards achieving the organization goals.

The key to success is effective management of the available resources. Organizations will not be able to achieve the desired performance if they fail to manage their financial resources properly (Weygandt et al, 2009). Thus, among the important aspects in improving the financial management of public sector organizations like schools are activities such as annual budget planning, delineating the roles of various committees with budget responsibilities, setting criteria for government budget allocation, and regular monitoring of the budget (Potter and Powell, 1992). School-wide budgets typically incorporate management staff, teaching staff, teaching support staff, general support staff, and material supplies. This resource classification scheme deliberately leaves out capital budgets as it dwells mainly on operational budgets. The rationale behind this is that in the Nigerian system most of the schools have no influence on capital. Investments are the responsibility of the central government or other ad hoc outfits. Thus, most of the schools have no responsibility for investments.

1.2     STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

          Secondary school education plays a key role in providing learners with opportunities to acquire skills that enable them to pursue higher education and to improve their skills leading to higher labour market productivity, (Ngware et al, 2006). The key concern to the government and the general public of Nigeria is to ensure access to quality education for all citizens. This has led to a higher proportion of the public funds being channelled to this sector. According to Price Water Coopers (2012), 21% of the total government expenditures in the 2012/2013 financial year were directed to the education sector. However, criticisms have also been levelled against the Nigerian education system on issues concerning efficiency in usage of financial resources to meet educational needs as well as questions about the quality and the relevance of the curriculum and the cost of providing education (Glennerster et al, 2011). Muricho and Chang’ach (2013) note that the budgetary control system is a government-mandated requirement that aims to ensure efficient use of funds with an aim of enhancing the administration of public schools.

It is, therefore, necessary to assess the effects of government budget allocation on the administration of public secondary schools in Plateau State, particularly in Bassa local government area.

 1.3     OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

The objectives of the study are to find out the following:

  1. Identify the sources of budget for public secondary schools in Bassa local government area Plateau.
  2. Identify the specific criteria being employed for allocating budget for public secondary schools in Bassa local government area Plateau.
  3. To examine the gap of utilizes the budget in public secondary schools in Bassa local government area Plateau
  4. Examine problems being associated with budget allocation on the administration in public secondary schools in Bassa local government area Plateau.
  5. To make recommendations and suggestions on how to implement government budget allocation in secondary schools.

1.4     RESEARCH QUESTIONS

Does government budget allocation aid the administration of public schools in the Bassa local government area?

  1. What are the sources of finance available for public secondary schools of Bassa local government area Plateau?
  2. To what extent do the criteria adopt to allocate budget consider the specific needs of secondary schools of Bassa local government area Plateau?
  3. How effectively do secondary schools utilize finance in Bassa local government area Plateau?

 1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

  • The ultimate goal of every government is to ensure that they provide quality education for its citizens. This goal can be achieved when the ministry of education create a forum for budgetary implementation.
  • This study would provide information to the public on government budget allocation in the public schools in Plateau State and Nigeria at large.
  • It would be of immense benefit to private schools that may want to implement government budget allocation into their schools.
  • It will also serve as a reference source to students and researchers who might want to further their studies on similar topics.

1.6     SCOPE OF THE STUDY

          The study is limited to selected public Secondary Schools in the Bassa local government area, which includes Bassa local government area High School, Aka Community Secondary School, Four Town Secondary School, Christian Secondary Commercial School and Technical Government College, Ewet, Bassa local government area and upon the research topic, which is centred on the assessment of the effect of government budget allocation on the administration of public secondary schools in Bassa local government area.

1.7     LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

          The limitation to this study in the following ways:

TIME FACTOR: The period within which the study is conducted is short for a thorough research study, hence gathering adequate information becomes very difficult.

FINANCE: This is one of the limitations to the scope of this study. The researcher is facing financial constraints to meet all the educational requirements including this research work. This caused the researcher to restrict her research work to one company for possible completion.

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