AN INVESTIGATION ON THE IMPACT OF DRUG ABUSE AND CULTISM ON SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS ACADEMIC PERFORMANCES IN MATHEMATIC IN RIVERS STATE
This study investigates the impact of drug abuse and cultism on secondary school students academic performances in Mathematics in Rivers State. Specifically, the study finds out the prevalence of drug abuse among secondary school students in Rivers State, finds out the prevalence of cultism among secondary school students in Rivers State, investigates the causes of drug abuse and cultism among secondary school students in Rivers State and explores the effects of drug abuse and cultism on secondary school students academic performances in Mathematics in Rivers State. The study employed the survey descriptive research design. A total of 209 responses were validated from the survey. The study anchors on the social learning theory. From the responses obtained and analysed, the findings reveals that the prevalence of drug abuse among secondary school students in Rivers State is high. Furthermore, the findings reveals that the prevalence of cultism among secondary school students in Rivers State is also high. The study recommends that the teachers on their part should encourage the students, praise efforts only not condemn, instead they should commend they should set good drug use and abuse. The government should design a drug education programme because education plays fundamental role in helping to fight the misuse of drugs in the school in particular and the public in general.
BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
According to Adams (2018), the national policy on education (1981) aspires to make education a dynamic instrument for change that will revolutionize all aspects of the nation's existence. Among the policy's objectives is the acquisition of suitable mental and physical skills, abilities, and competence as equipment for the person to live in and contribute to the growth of society." Individuals should be able to convert into valuable beings for themselves, their communities, and the country as a whole via education (Adams, 2018).
However, the aims of education are oriented toward the relevance of people' and societies' needs in connection to the reality of modern-day developments. Education has unavoidably taken on a new dimension as a result of the effect of drug misuse, particularly among students in Nigeria's postsecondary institutions. Any ailment that causes more fatalities, personal injuries, and devastation in a nation's history must be recognized as a major societal concern. This seems to be the case with drug misuse in our culture. And, particularly at institutions of higher learning, the frequency of drug misuse among students has reached such a high point that both new and old students are engaged in drug abuse (Jang, & Agnew, 2015).
Drug abuse has become a global problem that negatively affects nearly every nation, but the magnitude, causes, effects, and characteristics differ from nation to nation. Etymologically, according to Kiiru (2015), the use of intoxicants or illegal substances can be viewed as a pervasive phenomenon amongst various communities, such as the Fangs of North Western Equatorial Africa, the Aryans of Northern India, the Jivaro of the Amazonian rain forest, the Aborigenes of Australia, and the Reindeer Herders of Siberia. In his hypothesis, Gatonye (2016) views substance abuse as a chemical that modifies perceptions, cognition, emotion, behavior, and general physiological function.
In Nigeria, the incessant use of hard drugs and substance addiction problem is the same as in other countries, although the extent of the problem may be different, with a small portion of the youth population, particularly students, who form the manpower and future of Nigerian society, being disproportionately affected. According to the Federal Ministry of Youths and Sports, Nigerian youths between the ages of 10 and 30 make up approximately 49% of the country's population, and approximately 38% of Nigerian youths are involved with narcotics (National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, 2017).
On the other hand, cultism poses a grave threat to the safety, well-being, and academic progress of students. Involving violence, intimidation, and disruption of academic activities, cult activities create an unfriendly learning environment. According to a study conducted by Ojo (2017), cultism has a negative impact on students' academic performance and leads to a decline in their interest and participation in educational activities. The findings of a 2018 study by Asamaigo, Nwankwo, and Okorie provide additional support for this negative effect on academic performance..
These two vices, drug abuse and cultism, are increasing rapidly in our society, and several research reports indicate that these problems cut across various ages and strata of society, but the greatest percentage of drug users push the nation into destitution. Attention should be paid to these social ills that are continuing to spread in our country, particularly in the education sector, where recent results show how poor students' academic performance is.
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
In recent years, the alarming increase in the prevalence of drug abuse, as well as the consequences and effects of drug use among students, has spurred concern and a battle among all helping professions to develop innovative methods to providing teenagers with skills for life without substance abuse. According to WHO and World Heart Foundation statistics, 22.1% of Nigerian school-aged kids aged 12 to 17 smoke cigarettes. As the nation evolves from a drug-consuming to a drug-producing one, more Nigerian students are becoming drug addicts (Jorisc, 2020).
Depending on the mode of administration, drug use may be beneficial or detrimental. The prevalence of substance abuse has a variety of negative effects on the academic performance of secondary school pupils, including heart and liver disease (Ikott, 2021). As a result, the crime rate, which is related to substance abuse, has reached extremely disturbing levels. We have witnessed a plethora of behavior disorders and social maladjustments among youth who commit acts such as rape, homicide, larceny, and thuggery, among others (Ikott, 2021). The perpetrators of these crimes are predominantly adolescents who have recently entered secondary education. This substance abuse effects them academically, psychologically, and socially; as a result, they are often expelled from school, become delinquents, and join the street life. The problems have infiltrated every crevice and cranny of Nigerian society. Youths with mental health issues are roving the streets, falling out of school, languishing in hospital facilities, being convicted and incarcerated. Our society has been ravaged by the scourge of substance abuse, but there is no effective counseling program in our secondary institutions to combat the problem head-on. As a scourge of moral deterioration and societal instability, the Government, corporate organizations, and the general public's efforts to eradicate the menace are futile, as it has become a pandemic. Therefore, it is necessary to invest in preventive strategies rather than the prevalent curative approach, whose impact is minimal. In addition, it negatively impacts the academic performance of students.
Similarly, cultism has been found to negatively impact academic performance and educational attitudes. Asamaigo et al. (2018) identified cultism as a significant factor that impedes academic progress and decreases students' interest in educational activities in secondary institutions thus this study will investigate the impact of drug abuse and cultism on secondary school students academic performances in Mathematics in Rivers State.
OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The main aim of this study is to investigate the impact of drug abuse and cultism on secondary school students academic performances in Mathematics in Rivers State. Specific aims of this study are:
To find out the prevalence of drug abuse among secondary school students in Rivers State.
To find out the prevalence of cultism among secondary school students in Rivers State.
To investigate the causes of drug abuse and cultism among secondary school students in Rivers State.
To explore the effects of drug abuse and cultism on secondary school students academic performances in Mathematics in Rivers State.
The following questions will be answered in this study:
What is the prevalence of drug abuse among secondary school students in Rivers State?
What is the prevalence of cultism among secondary school students in Rivers State?
What are the causes of drug abuse and cultism among secondary school students in Rivers State?
What are the effects of drug abuse and cultism on secondary school students academic performances in Mathematics in Rivers State?
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
It is hoped that this study will provide information for government, educators and relevant bodies to reflect upon various factors that triggers youth’s indulgence in drug or substance abuse. In so doing, they can investigate the possibility of introducing the recommended solutions to their school, which may sequent lead to enhancing students’ educational outcomes in school. The will be of utmost benefits to students and authority of the secondary schools in Nigeria as it serves as a blue print in curtailing the consumption of drugs in the school environment. The study will be of relevance to the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency(NDLEA) and other relevant bodies in combating drug abuse and addiction in the society as well dish out tips that can help those addicted to drugs turn a new a leave. Finally, the study will contribute to the general body of knowledge and serve as a reference material to student and scholars who wishes to conduct further studies in related field.
SCOPE OF THE STUDY
Broadly, this study focuses on investigate the impact of drug abuse and cultism on secondary school students academic performances in Mathematics in Rivers State. Specifically, this study focuses on finding out the prevalence of drug abuse among secondary school students in Rivers State, finding out the prevalence of cultism among secondary school students in Rivers State, investigating the causes of drug abuse and cultism among secondary school students in Rivers State and exploring the effects of drug abuse and cultism on secondary school students academic performances in Mathematics in Rivers State.
Students of selected secondary schools in Rivers State will be the respondents for this study.
1.7 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
In the course of carrying out this study, the researcher experienced some constraints, which included time constraints, financial constraints, language barriers, and the attitude of the respondents. However, the researcher were able to manage these just to ensure the success of this study.
Moreover, the case study method utilized in the study posed some challenges to the investigator including the possibility of biases and poor judgment of issues. However, the investigator relied on respect for the general principles of procedures, justice, fairness, objectivity in observation and recording, and weighing of evidence to overcome the challenges.
1.8 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
Drug abuse: The use of illegal drugs or the use of prescription or over-the-counter drugs for purposes other than those for which they are meant to be used, or in excessive amounts. Drug abuse may lead to social, physical, emotional, and job-related problems.
Cultism: This is a devotion to the doctrine or a cult or to the practices of a cult.
Students: a person studying in a school or other place of higher education
Academic performance: Academic performance is the measurement of student achievement across various academic subjects. It is the extent to which a student has attained their short or long-term educational goal.