The role of education in the development and transformation of human societies
all over the world in the course of history cannot be overemphasized. This is because it is the wheel and hub which have propelled development and transformed the world to in all spheres. Education is important and central for societal development. Education has been the force behind the progress of all cultures and civilizations. However, western style of education came to “Ma” in the 20th century. This led to series of changes and development that transformed the society of “Ma”, even though it has its own limitations.
The introduction of Western style of education in Nigeria with the arrival of Wesleyan Christian Missionaries in Badagry in 1842.[i]
It played an active role in the provision of formal education for the people. Between 1842 and 1914,[ii]
about ten different Christian missions arrived in Nigeria, and began intensive missionary and educational work. Schools were built for the purpose of disseminating education and conversion of people to Christianity. The missions began to struggle for pupils/members such that there was a proliferation of primary schools established by different missions. The education received was limited to 4Rs i.e reading, writing, arithmetic and religion.[iii]
This new missionary education prepared the recipient for new job opportunities in colonial service such as teachers, clerks, messenger and interpreters. Emphasis was placed on character training
, most of the missions established primary schools
with little emphasis laid on secondary and higher education, at the initial stage.[iv]