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This study aimed to identify the challenges faced by schools district when implementing educational policies and suggest ways to overcome these obstacles and improve policy execution. The researcher constructed a questionnaire and the questionnaire was used to collect data. The study sample consisted of three public senior secondary schools in district 2 of Lagos State comprising of Ikorodu, Shomolu and Kosofe schools chosen as a purposeful sample, the sample was made up of 102 respondents from 3 schools. The questionnaire was introduced to university professors, and educational supervisors, Modification were made according to their advice. The data collected was analyzed using frequency tables, means, percentages, chi square tests and cronbach’s alpha coefficient reliability was used to test the hypotheses, it was valued at 0.05. Three hypotheses were tested and all three hypotheses were rejected. The study shows that there is a significant interaction between Nigeria educational achievement and her education implying that Nigeria educational achievements are directly linked towards avhieving her educational objectives through implementing her policy. The study shows that there are significant factors affecting policy implementation. The study shows that there is a significant relationship amongst all aforementioned challenges of educational policy implementation as grouped into political economic and sociocultural factors that affects the implementation of educational policies  

Word count: 283

Keywords: Challenges, Education, Implementation, Policies, Overcome, Obstacles







Title i

Certification ii

Dedication iii

Acknowledgement iv

Abstract v

Table of Contents vi


1.1 Background to the Study 1

1.2 Statement of Problem 5

1.3 Purpose of the Study 6

1.4 Research Questions 6

1.5 Research Hypotheses 6

1.6 Scope of Study 7

1.7 Limitation of the Study 7

1.8 Significance of the Study 8

1.9 Operational Definition of Terms 8


2.1   Introduction 10

2.2  Concept of policy 10

2.2.1 Concept of Education Policy 13

2.2.2 Challenges militating against educational policy implementation in Nigeria 16

2.2.3 Possible solution to challenges facing implementation of educational policies 23

2.3 The Concept of Policy Implementation Elements in Implementation 25

2.4   Theoretical Framework 29

2.4.1 Top-down approach   29

2.4.2 Bottom-up approach 31

2.4.2 Synthesis: The third generation of implementation research 32

2.5 Empirical review 34


3.1 Design of the Study 36

3.2 Population of the Study                                                                                                    36

3.3 Sample and Sampling Techniques 36

3.4 Research Instrument 36

3.5 Validation of the Instrument 37

3.6 Reliability of Instrument 37

3:7 Method of Data Collection 37

3:8 Method of Data Analysis 37


4.1 Introduction 38

4.2 Research Participants’ Characteristics and Classification 38

4.3 Research Questions 39

4.4 Research Hypotheses 43

4.5 Summary 46


5.1 Introduction 47

5.2 Discussion of finding 47

5.3 Suggestion 49

5.4 Conclusion 52

Reference 54





1.1    Background to the Study to identify the challenges faced by schools district when implementing educational policies

In education as in other fields of human endeavor, every official action of an organization must have a backing or a basis. It is this purpose that a policy serves. A policy defines the area in which decisions are to be made, but it does not make the decision. It usually provides a general guide that facilitates decision-making. Educational policies provide the direction for educational activities. The formulation of an educational policy sets the stage for implementation which, according to Ukeje (1986), is perhaps the most important aspect of planning. Planning is usually an action which succeeds policy formulation but precedes implementation. Unfortunately, educational policies and goal attainment have been irreconcilable due to implementation constraints. Perhaps this accounts for the observation made by Governor Oyakhilome of Rivers State in an address sent to the Convention of the Nigerian Association for Educational Administration and Planning in 1986. He expressed concern about the problem of policy implementation thus: We know it is difficult to realize planned objectives one hundred percent. But our experience in planning education in this country shows a disturbing gap between planned objectives and attained results. As professionals in the field of education, it may be pertinent to identify whether those critical gaps are results of faulty planning or faulty implementation (Oyakhilome 1986:2). Policy implementation in education is a conspicuous national problem that has taken centre stage in Nigeria. The Nigerian educational system is characterized by many challenges. One such challenge in the Nigerian educational system is beset with educational policy instability. The major issue in educational development is educational policy instability. One of the most serious problems threatening the sustainability and development of Nigerian educational systems is inconsistency in the various educational policies at every level of government. This inconsistency in the educational system affects the implementation of educational plans and programmes. Nigerian education cannot perform optimally without stable educational policies. Nigeria’s educational system has witnessed a series of changes in policies and programmes. Some of the changes seem to be desirable while some will make one wonder why some of the other changes were ever initiated (Manafa, 2011; Aluede, 2006). In addition, Manafa (2011) and Ayeni (2000) conclude that many of the changes in educational policies in Nigeria have been described as the product of confusion. There is, therefore, a high level of uncertainty which is affecting the implementation of Educational policies negatively in Nigeria. Ogunode & Samuel (2020); Yaro (2017); Philip, Okoroafor, & Iro (2015) and UNICEF (2017) observed that the Nigerian government attached great importance to educational policies due to its relevance which includes among others the provision of sound knowledge to the citizens for adaptation into the larger society. Certain factors impede education policy development which adversely affects the implementation of the policies and subsequent non-accomplishment of educational policy goals in schools including ensuring quality education (Yaro 2017; Odukoya 2011). The major problem of the system of education is the frequent changes in policies. Several studies confirmed that politics affect the implementation of the National policy on education (Ogunode, Solomon, & Jegede 2021a; Ogunode, Gregory & Abubakar 2020; Ogunode & Jegede, 2021; Odukoya 2011; Ogbonnaya, 2010). The Nigerian education system has been subjected to a lot of educational policy changes. For instance, Odukoya, Bowale, & Okunlola, (2018) submitted that for about forty years now, Nigeria has been unable to successfully implement the National Policy on Education [NPE]. The policy which came into existence in 1977, after over four years of deliberations at various levels, appeared to have solutions to virtually all core educational problems (FME, 1977). The National Policy on Education, revised in (1989; 1998; 2004, 2007 and 2014), contains every necessary ingredient for the achievement of the goals of the education system. Odukoya, Bowale, & Okunlola, (2018) cited Mrs. Bola Mosuro, the Proprietress of Access Universal College, Lagos lamented that: “Our problem in this country [Nigeria] is that we often pick and drop policies as we want. There is nothing wrong with the 6-3-3-4 system. We simply have not implemented it well and now we have picked another one”. Based on this, it is imperative to examine the causes of educational policy instability in Nigeria and its implications on educational development. Educational policies are made but their implementations are often thwarted or sabotaged. This disheartening situation may be as a result of distortions in the educational system or the ineffective implementation engendered primarily by lack of political will, lack of continuity of programs, and corruption. This has also hindered national growth and development and, until urgent action is taken to review Nigeria’s educational policy system, its national aspirations will continue to be compromised. Some of the problems encountered in the implementation of educational policies include non-payment of teacher’s salaries, unqualified teachers, under-funding and shortage/unavailability of some needed resources. Furthermore, the problems in educational policy implementation include, frequent change in government, constant strike actions, uninspiring political leadership and poor funding of education to mention but a few. As a result, educational policies are made which usually provide a general guide that does not facilitates decision making. Educational policies provide the direction for educational activities. Contributing on this, Ukeje(2006) opined that the formulation of an educational policy sets the stage for its implementation. Unfortunately, educational policies and goal attainment have been irreconcilable due to implementation constraints. Also, policy implementation in education is a conspicuous national problem that has taken centre stage in Nigeria. The Nigerian education system has experienced a lot of changes in her educational policy. Education policy is directed towards increasing the quality of life of a people. Education is a potent tool for all round development of an individual or a nation. Bassey, Ekpo and Edet (2008) asserted that education is a great investment in an economy. it increases the quality of the individuals in a nation and this helps to speed up the race for economic development. For this reason, the federal government. of Nigeria has adopted education as an instrument per excellence for affecting national development. In view of this, the government has reviewed the national policy severally in order to make it more functional and to meet up with the changes in the world technology. One of Nigeria’s national goal is to build a great and dynamic economy. The federal government came up with these policies that aim at transforming the economics standing of citizens and would want to use education to actualize these objectives. For these goals to be actualized, there is need for proper planning staffing, funding and management of policies. Management in this context is concerned with planning, funding, monitoring and Evaluation. According to Okoroma (2006) efforts have been made to develop education in Nigeria since 1960. Various polices have been formulated but not well implemented or given enough time to evaluate the result. Unfortunately not much has been achieved. Odukoya (2015) observed that between 1991-1999 the country had five different regimes, and ministers of Education. The states were not exonerated from these changes. Each of the presidents, ministers, Governors and commissioners had different conceptions and policies on education for implementation during their tenure. With such instability in the system of governance most of the policies were abandoned half way probably because funds were not provided. The political and administrative inconsistencies were so much that they affected both policies and programmes in the educational sector. Odukoya (2015) noted the incessant changes and paucity of technocrats within the government. These resulted to lack of continuity of programmes, fallen standards, and inconsistency. Nigeria has not earned a pass mark in this regard. In the light of these objectives there is need to re-assess the steps taken by government to realize these noble objectives in education. For this reason, educational planners need to examine these fundamental problems in education.


1.2    Statement of Problem at identifying the challenges faced by schools district when implementing educational policies

Over the years, the gap between educational policies and goal attainment due to inadequate implementation of these policies has become of great concern to many observers. The paper is interested in identifying the implementation constraints and to explore the implications of poor educational policy implementation for national development. Following a clarification of the causes and effects of the problem of poor policy implementation, the paper will advance remedial measures. It is on record that Nigeria has had several educational policies since 1977 which have continued to be reviewed with the aim to serving the current need of the nation. Regrettably, all the policies have not been fully implemented effectively and efficiently to meet the yearnings and aspirations of Nigerians. Hence, there is a glaring educational policy implementation challenges in Nigeria mostly in secondary school education system, which has become a socio-political, economic and educational discourse among scholars and academics.




1.3    Purpose of the Study for identifying the challenges faced by schools district when implementing educational policies

The purpose of this study is to identify the challenges faced by school districts when implementing educational policies and suggest ways to overcome these obstacles and improve policy execution. Specifically the study examined:

  1. If recent educational achievements are in line with the educational policies in Nigeria
  2. Factors influencing the implementation of educational policies
  3. To the extent in which the causes of poor implementation of education policies affect national development.

1.4    Research Questions

Research questions In course of this examination, the following questions will be addressed.

  • Are recent educational achievements in line with the education policies in Nigeria?
  • What factors influence the implementation of education policies?
  • To what extent do the causes of poor implementation of education policies affect national development?

1.5   Research Hypotheses

Ho1; There is no significant interaction between Nigeria educational achievement and her education policies.

Ho2; There are no significant factors that affect the implementation of education policy

Ho3: There is no significant relationship amongst political, economic and socio-cultural factors that affects implementation of educational policies



1.6 Scope of Study

The study focuses on the challenges faced by schools districts when implementing educational policies and intends to suggest ways to overcome these obstacles and improve policy execution, This study will in terms of geographical location cover 2 senior secondary schools in the Ojo Local Government Area of Lagos State

1.7 Limitation of the Study

  1. Sample size

This depends on the nature of problem chosen by the researcher. Sample size is of a greater importance in quantitative studies as opposed to qualitative ones. If the sample size is too small, the statistical tests cannot identify significant relationships or connections within a given data set. It is advised that other researchers should base the same study on a larger sample size to get more accurate results.

  1. Formulation of objectives

The study may develop certain shortcomings if the objectives are formulated in a very broad manner. However, the researcher has specify effective methods to narrow the formulation of objectives to increase the level of this study’s focus.

  • Implementation of your data collection methods

It is necessary to acknowledge that If a researcher doesn’t have a lot of experience in collecting primary data, there’s a certain risk that the implementation of the methods may develop flaws. However, to conquer this limitation, the researcher has reviewed and visited previous related studies to learn and assimilate information on how to collect the research data.

1.8 Significance of the Study

The findings of this study will serve as a guideline for schools on how to implement educational policies and overcome obstacles which affect them while trying to implement these policies. It will equip schools with the necessary tools needed to overcome obstacles and blockade affecting policy implementation. The finding will also serve as a guide for every level of education moving forward on better policy implementation

1.9 Operational Definition of Terms

Challenges; Challenge can be defined as a difficulty or obstacle that requires effort, skill, and determination to overcome. It implies a situation that is demanding, often testing one’s abilities, resources, or resolve.

Education; Education can be defined as the act or process of imparting or acquiring general knowledge, developing the powers of reasoning and judgment, and generally of preparing oneself or others intellectually for mature life.

Implementation; Implementation is a comprehensive term that refers to the process of putting a plan, decision, or policy into practice or action. It involves translating ideas, strategies, or intentions into tangible and operational outcomes. The implementation process encompasses a series of steps, actions, and activities that are undertaken to achieve the intended goals or objectives

Policies; Policy is a formalized set of principles, guidelines, or rules established by an organization, government, or authority to guide decision-making, actions, and behaviors within a specific context or domain. Policies serve as a framework for addressing issues, managing resources, and achieving objectives, providing a structured approach to decision-making and governance.

Overcome; Overcome means to successfully prevail over challenges, difficulties, obstacles, or adversities. It involves the ability to navigate and conquer obstacles, whether they are physical, mental, emotional, or situational. Overcoming implies a triumph, resilience, or a positive resolution of challenges

Obstacles; Obstacles are impediments or barriers that hinder progress, development, or achievement. These can manifest in various forms and contexts, including physical, mental, emotional, or situational challenges that create difficulties in reaching a goal or desired outcome.

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