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Title: Getting a good education? : the experience of Nigerian children in London schools
Author: Ososanwo, Oluremi Temitope
ISNI:       0000 0001 3460 8370
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 1985
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An examination of the experiential reality of schooling for Nigerian children in two inner London single sex comprehensive schools was carried out. Interviews were conducted with 45 children, 36 parents and 84 teachers. In addition, classroom observations were carried out on over two thirds of the children. It was found that Nigerian parents sent their children to British schools in the belief that their children will not only get a 'good education', but will also achieve educational qualifications which will give them access to high level professional occupations. Rather than encourage children to pursue these types of employment goals, teachers tended to socialize children to adopt their own definition of what the children's aspirations should be. Through social and academic counselling teachers essentially became involved in the attempt to prepare children for particular roles in society constrained by their social class, family and ethnic backgrounds. The lack of employment opportunities for young black and white adults in this country, however, did not work fully to dissuade Nigerian children from pursuing the acquisition of school knowledge. This was because Nigerian parents socialized their children to orientate towards an occupational future, not in Britain, but in Nigeria. Although teachers refuted that they engaged in social and ethnic differentiation, it was found that the school careers of Nigerian pupils were characterized by a need to develop strategies to cope with an education system which was geared towards enhancing the educational progress of white middle class children. In terms of curriculum content neither of the two research schools had taken on board their education authority's initiatives for multi-ethnic education. While most teachers were very critical of the overall management of their schools, some of them were found to be inept at organizing school learning programmes. Despite these organizational shortcomings, the instrumental approach to schooling of Nigerian parents, together with their knowledge of the processes involved in schooling, ensured that most of them could persuade teachers (either directly through confrontation or indirectly through teachers' perceptions of the children's homebackground) to accommodate their parental ambitions. These, challenged the stereotype of the educational potential of black pupils. Hence, relative to children in ILEA schools generally, Nigerian children were found to be educational achievers.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Education & training