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Group Study

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Submitted By tnhmtam
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We would like to express our deepest gratitude and many thanks are due to Mrs. Truong Thi Nhu Thuy who spends lots of time giving comments and suggestions to every piece of our work. We are frankly thankful for her professional guidance and detailed advice during doing the research. She helped us a great deal to bring our research to completion. Her enthusiastic way to give us guidance, to correct our mistakes and to support our spirit all aided us to surmount difficulties during doing the research and show our ability confidently as well.
We are also indebted to HUCFL Second - year English students for their cooperation to complete our questionnaires and their active contributions to suggest feasible solutions for our research topic.
Last but not least, we can’t help mentioning the remarkable efforts of our group members. They conducted the research to the best of their ability and worked very hard to perfect the research as well as possible. Their merits are thankworthy.

Our research was carried out to investigate the attitude of HUCFL Second- year English students toward the school facility protection and some solutions for school facility maintenance. Due to the important of school facilities in the cause of HUCFL’s education- training and its status quo, we carried out the small- scale research to examine main causes of HUCFL’s facility damage. We delivered 20 questionnaires randomly to the Second – year English students and we thereafter analyzed the data collected from those questionnaires. Based on the research findings, we had the clear understanding about the concerned reality of HUCFL’s school facilities and the close relationship between the lack of students’ awareness and the degraded quality of the facilities. What is more, we realized that the students’ responsibility for protecting the school facilities is the main solution for bettering material base in the university. It can be concluded that apart from locking systems, regular maintenance and so forth, enhancing largely students’ awareness will be followed by effective gains. The solution prospectively reduces the budget for improving damaged facilities and mobilizes this saved money for other tasks.

According to numerous recent researches, school facilities play a significant role in deciding academic outcomes. For one thing, school facilities affect learning. Spatial configurations, noise, heat, cold, light, and air quality obviously bear on students' ability to perform. Moreover, school facilities also affect the daily performance of teachers who utilize them. The teachers certainly demonstrate the most effective work in the most adequate teaching environment. Therefore, clear aware of how particularly important the school facilities are, right from establishment, HUCFL took more steps to form and to strengthen material – technical network by degrees in order to efficiently perform the education- training task, to meet the social needs. Nevertheless, the fact remains that this modern material- technical base are upgraded gradually due to bad students’ behaviors. Undoubtfully, school facilities degradation in HUCFL is a pressing issue. This is the reason of our topic formulation: “HUCFL Second - year English Students’ Awareness of School Facility Protection- Suggestions to Maintaining the University’s Facilities”. We will develop our research on 3 following questions: 1. What is the reality of HUCFL’s facilities? 2. What is the HUCFL Second – year English students’ attitude toward protecting the University’s facilities? 3. What measures can be taken to maintain the University’s facilities?

School building design features and its material- technical base have been proven to have considerable influences upon both learning and teaching quality. 1. OVERALL BUILDING CONDITION AND STUDENT PERFORMANCE
Correlation studies below will show a strong relationship between overall building conditions and academic outcomes.
Two following studies have used a composite building condition to measure the relationship it has upon student achievement.
Berner (1993) compared the condition of elementary schools in Washington, DC to student standardized achievement scores. She obtained through an assessment of certain components or features that have a direct influence on student achievement. “She found a significant difference in the achievement scores of students in poor buildings compared with scores of students in excellent buildings. If a school were to improve its conditions from poor to excellent, the achievement scores would increase by an average of 10.9 points.” (Retrieved March 7, 2011 from
Cash (1993) developed an instrument to measure the condition of school buildings. “She found the achievement scores of students in substandard buildings to be from 2 to 5 percentile points below the scores of students in above standard buildings.” (Retrieved March 7, 2011 from
Taken together, the research studies cited above demonstrate that the condition of the school building has a sizeable and measurable influence upon the achievement of students (Earthman, 1998). 2. BUILDING CONDITION – COMPONENTS AND TEACHER PERFORMANCE:
The condition of a school building affects not only student achievement, but also the work and effectiveness of a teacher.
“Lowe (1990) investigated the relationship between learning climate and physical conditions in three elementary schools in Texas. The learning climate was defined as the ethos of expectations and perceptions of teachers, students, parents about self, student achievement, organizational rules and policies and the facility itself[….]Teachers in buildings in poor condition stated that the design and appearance of the facility had a negative impact upon the learning climate.” (Retrieved March 7, 2011 from
The technical facilities such as projectors- screens, computer systems- Internet, cassette recorders, stereos, multifunction-rooms, laboratories and so on play a key role in teaching process.” The lack of resources in a school also contributes to teacher job dissatisfaction, which then can lead to attrition. In interviews with public school teachers in New York City, a large percentage of new teachers said they did not have access to adequate basic supplies. Most teachers had to use their own money to equip their classroom. Of the teachers interviewed, 26 percent report spending $300 to $1000 of their own funds on classroom supplies over the year, 14 percent spent $100 to $200, and 12 percent $50 to $75.” (Retrieved March 7, 2011 from II. THE RECENT STATUS OF SCHOOL FACILITIES: “During this past decade, there have been a number of studies that have demonstrated the deplorable condition of some of the school buildings throughout the country. The U.S. General Accounting Office has identified every state in the union, including California, as having school buildings that are in poor condition (1995). In many school systems, particularly in urban and high-poverty areas, students attend school in buildings that threaten their health, safety, and learning opportunities (U.S. Department of Education, NCES, June, 2000). The GAO (1995) estimates that over half of the 42 million public school students attend school in a building that needs at least one or more major building component or feature extensively repaired.” According to recent research, school facilities are either too old to utilize in old school buildings or downgraded step by step in the new one.
“As America’s school buildings age, we face the growing challenge of maintaining school facilities at a level that enables our teachers to meet the needs of 21st century learners. While the construction of new school facilities supports this task, many older buildings have developed modularly over time. A 1920s era school may have gotten an addition in 1950, which in turn got an addition in 1970, and yet another addition in 1990. The task of caring for these old school buildings, some of which are historically or architecturally significant, at a level that supports contemporary instructional practices is substantial. At the same time, maintaining the finely tuned workings of new, more technologically advanced facilities also demands considerable expertise and commitment [...] Challenges arise in both new and old facilities, although the types of concerns may differ [...]” The reasonable explanation for facility protection problems is that “Certainly extreme environmental conditions and a lack of maintenance funding contribute to building deterioration; however, many facilities problems are not a function of geography or socioeconomic factors but are, instead, related to maintenance staffing levels, training, and management practices.” III. SOLUTIONS FOR FACILITY PROTECTION: In order to implement school facility maintenance efficiently, there is a particular need of commitment at all levels of the education organization. The fact remains that having proper and effective plan demanding coordination of resources will bring about positive results. 1. EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT TOGETHER WITH PLANNING
“Unless facilities maintenance planning is a component of a greater organizational management plan, it is doomed to failure.” […] Facilities maintenance planning must be an element of the overall organizational strategy—part of the “master plan.” The master plan is the “blueprint” for daily decision-making throughout a school district. It provides concrete documentation about the organization’s needs and intentions. […] Good plans include short- and long-term objectives, budgets, and timelines, all of which demonstrate organizational commitment to facilities maintenance. Effective planning also requires that planners evaluate both the organization’s overarching goals and the day-to-day details needed to meet those targets. Thus, a comprehensive plan serves both as a blueprint for the here and now and a road map to the future!” 2. COLLABORATING DURING PLANNING: It is necessary to get students involved in school facility maintenance because cooperation in the task of protecting facilities will create motivation among students and foster them to present their own duties well. A win- win situation is quoted as a clear example for collaborating during planning “GOOD MAINTENANCE: A WIN-WIN SITUATION
Russell Elementary School had its act together, and Jenny, the district’s facilities manager, wanted to let everyone know it. “Principal Dalton, your school has worked very hard this year to conserve energy. According to reports I’ve received, you have a school-wide “turn-off-the-lights program,” you insist on “energy saver” mode on all resting computers, and you maintain strict climate control on a year-round basis. Because your students and staff have done so much to conserve energy and protect the environment, I am pleased to issue your school a check for $2,000 out of the money you saved the district this year in utility bills. Please earmark the funds for student field trips and assemblies.” What Jenny chose not to mention was that the school’s utility bill had decreased by more than $6,000 that year for a variety of reasons, including considerable forethought on her part while planning a major renovation to the building. Still, the building staff had motivated the kids to do their part as well, and for that, they deserved the reward!” 3. PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE: AN OUNCE OF PREVENTION IS WORTH A POUND OF CURE
Traditionally, the common strategic maintenance of school facilities is replacement of out of date (or out of order) equipments. That means nothing is done to a piece of equipment until it breaks down. And then, after the equipment breaks, the least expensive repair option is used to return the equipment to service. This is “breakdown” maintenance. On the other hand, regularly scheduled equipment maintenance (called preventive maintenance) not only prevents sudden and unexpected equipment failure, but also reduces the overall life-cycle cost of the building. “Maintenance entails much more than just fixing broken equipment. In fact, a well-designed facility management system generally encompasses four categories of maintenance: emergency (or response) maintenance, routine maintenance, preventive maintenance, and predictive maintenance. Finally, the cutting edge of facility management is now predictive maintenance, which uses sophisticated computer software to forecast the failure of equipment based on age, user demand, and performance measures.” (Retrieved March 7, 2011 from Planning for maintaining school facilities)

The Maintenance Spectrum 4. SECURING SCHOOL FACILITIES “Securing a facility refers to ensuring the physical security of both a facility and its occupants—and requires a comprehensive approach to planning. (Retrieved March 7, 2011 from Planning for maintaining school facilities) * Locking Systems * Equipment protection * Police/security facilities * Visibility * Crisis management/disaster planning

To conduct our research, we carried out a small- scale survey among the HUCFL English Students on their attitude toward the school facilities protection.
Data collection method:
At first, we composed a logical questionnaire about HUCFL English students’ awareness of protecting school facilities. The questionnaire includes 10 questions in which have 9 close questions (multi-choice questions) and 1 open question with an eye to collecting some students’ suggestions for maintaining school facilities. There were 20 questionnaires delivered randomly to 20 HUCFL English students.
Data analysis
After we gathered all those completed questionnaires, we analyzed data from the answers and made a list of the suggestions. Almost the data were changed into percentage. Next, we performed the analyzed data by charts and tables for interpreting final results. Finally, we chose selectively the feasible suggestions in order that we gave a meaningful conclusion.


There were 100% of students who have an awareness of protecting the school facilities. That means most of them have active attitude and responsibility for careful use and maintenance of the school facilities.


Chart 1: The influences of school facilities on the academic outcomes
The chart 1 indicates that 90% of students thought that the school facilities have important influences on their academic outcomes. The other 10% supposed that the influence of school facilities is normal. None of them thought it is particular important or less important. That means the school facilities play a significant role in the teaching and learning results. The school with better facilities may lead to the better students and instructors’ performance, whereas the one lacking school facilities may affect negatively the final achievements and the work of students and instructors, respectively.


Chart 2: Agents cause degraded school facilities
The chart reveals that 60% of students regarded bad quality of school facilities as the main reason for degraded school facilities. The other 50%, 35% and 25% mentioned that the school facilities are being degraded because of students’ vandalism, being too old and dust, respectively. It seems that school facilities in bad quality have downgraded rapidly, so do the old and dusty ones. In addition to the environmental conditions, the students’ irresponsibility causes serious school facilities’ damage. Using school facilities with indiscriminate and overuse manner may destroy the quality of facilities step by step.


Chart 3: The school facilities are the most degraded
As shown, a half of students believed that computers are the most downgraded school facilities. The agreement for degraded facilities of tables- chairs, blackboards and projectors accounted for 45%, 10% and 5%, respectively. It can be concluded that most computers failed to be repaired are out of order. Some of them are no longer in use. The others still work with problems such as low speed, unable to access the Internet and the like. Tables- chairs and blackboards also suffer from abrasions and dust. The minority of projectors are unable to run.



Chart 4: The school facilities must be protected
It can be seen from the chart 4 that 75% of students approved that computers must be protected. 30%, 10% and 10% of students chose projectors, blackboards and tables- chairs, respectively. That implies that computers should be given special maintenance to improve the quality and condition. It is also necessary to prevent projectors from the students’ vandalism. Tables- chairs and blackboards need careful notice and regular protection.


Chart 5: The number of HUCFL English students has vandalized the school facilities
The chart 5 demonstrates that 80% students said “No” when being asked “Have they ever vandalized the school facilities?”. The other 20% confessed that they had vandalized the school facilities. That signifies that majority of students have responsible consciousness for avoiding vandalism. They seem to understand the importance of school facilities and school facility protection well. They may hardly ever vandalize as a consequence of the remarkable influences of facilities on their study. However, there exist not a few students who keep vandalizing the facilities although they know that those actions are wrong. It is viewed as the root of the gradually degraded school facilities.


Chart 6: HUCFL English students’ reactions when they see vandalism
According to the chart 6, 55% of students agreed that they will advice a vandal to stop his/ her vandalism if they see he/ she purposely vandalizes the school facilities. The other 30%, 10%, 5% will ignore the vandalism, immediate call to security guard or ask for teachers’ interference, respectively. That denotes that almost students are awake to preventing vandalism. They have numerous their own ways to stop vandalism. Firstly, giving the advice is likely to the most efficient solution to persuade the vandal to give up his/ her bad deed. Secondly, in all likelihood calling to security guard or asking for teachers’ interference keep the vandal from making negative impact on facilities. The other chooses to keep silent and ignore in this case. That unconsciousness and irresponsible of those students may result in the increase of vandalism and the degradation of school facilities.


Chart 7: Different kinds of punishment should be imposed on the vandals
As illustrated above, there were 55% of the students who agreed that washing WCs should be imposed on the vandals. The other 35% thought that one of the punishments for the vandals is giving fines. 20% of students chose taking down conduct as another punishment. That means washing WCs is the best punishment imposed on the vandals because students all dislike washing WCs. This harsh punishment may help to reduce the number of vandals. Other, giving fines and taking down conduct should be imposed on vandals to deter totally them from acts of sabotages.


Chart 8: People who must show a sense of responsibility to protect the school facilities
As revealed, there were 90% of students agreed that students should show a sense of responsibility to protect the school facilities. The other 35%, 35% and 30% placed the responsibility for school facilities protection on teachers, leaders of all departments and security guards, respectively. It seems that the school facility protection is the cause of the whole students as well as the management staffs. What is more, mobilizing the large number of students to implement the maintenance is particularly significant. The students hold an important duty to strengthen and maintain the school facilities. Therefore, it is necessary to get students involved in school facility maintenance because cooperation in the task of protecting facilities will create motivation among students and encourage them to perform their own duties well.

As suggested by respondents, many solutions for maintaining the school facilities are presented. First of all, they highly value the campaigns launched by the university on improvement and repairment of school facilities. The propaganda for school facilities protection will affect largely and widely among the students’ awareness. In addition, some said that “Teachers and leaders of all departments should pay more attention by giving some speech on the particular importance of the school facilities”. Secondly, some opinions show there is a need to have close combination of students and educational staffs to boost the cooperation for the tasks of protection. Thirdly, the other student suggested “Strict punishments should be implemented to contain the vandalism”.

From numerous HUCFL English students’ suggestions we had collected, we realized that if the university develops those following solutions, it will surmount obstacles in protecting its facilities. For one thing, there is a need to take shape locking securities because securing facilities will ensure the physical security of those facilities. Another, it is particularly significant to enhance the students’ awareness. Specifically, instructors, who usually contact students, have to encourage their students to enthusiastically join facilities protection. To do this, they should spend a little bit time for showing how important the school facilities are to the students in every class. Leaders also should give heed to implement the propaganda of facility protection by regularly giving speech to students. In addition, more and more campaigns on the school facilities protection should be launched because those can arouse the students’ interest and create surge responses among them. More importantly, a department in charge of the facility maintenance should be set up. This department will be responsible for seeking and forming groups of students named “checking security group”. Those checking security groups will check the condition of school facilities regularly; put into practice the routine, preventive and predictive maintenance. Of course, there are adequate awards for individuals and checking security groups that perform their duty well and strict punishments for vandals.

It can be concluded that there is a need to enhance the HUCFL students’ awareness of protecting the school facilities. Only there is a cooperation of the students and the full- time staffs will the cause of HUCLF’s facility protection and maintenance achieve fruitful gains. Generally, raising the students’ responsibility or getting involved students in the cause of improving and preventing the school facilities from damage should be incorporated into the maintenance task in universities. We terminated our research and gain results as well as valuable experiences as we expected. However, there exists some limitations in experience and time. Firstly, there is no doubt that we lack experiences to do a research at the first time. Therefore, we do not study multi- sided aspects of the research topic. In addition, within around 8 weeks, it is hard for us to complete our research perfectly or to do an intensive research. The small- scale research with 20 participants can’t produce a precise result. Secondly, each group members has completely different timetable, so the time for our discussion is limited. Sequel is that we merely choose questionnaire as a methodology and then give relatively general outcomes. Eventually, from the disadvantages stated above, we are really welcomed if anyone is absorbing in this topic and continue to develop.

1. Do you think that you have an awareness of protecting our school facilities?
Yes No 2. How do the school facilities influence on academic outcomes? A. particular important B. important C. normal D. less important

3. Why are the school facilities being downgraded/ degraded?
(You can choose more than one) A. too old B. dust C. bad quality D. students’ vandalism

4. Which the school facilities are the most downgraded/ degraded?
(You can choose more than one) A. tables and chairs B. blackboards C. projectors D. computers Others:....................................................................................................................................

5. Which facilities must be protected?
(You can choose more than one) A. tables and chairs B. blackboards C. projectors D. computers E. all of them
Others: ………………………………………………………………………………………………

6. Have you ever vandalized the school facilities? A. Yes
(If Yes, how many times?.....................................................................................................) B. No

7. What should you do if you see someone who purposely vandalizes the school facilities? A. ignore B. advise him/her to stop his/ her vandalism C. ask for teachers’ interference D. immediately call to security guard
Others ways:......................................................................................................................................

8. What kinds of punishment should be imposed on vandals? A. by money B. by taking down conduct C. by washing WCs

9. Who must show a sense of responsibility to protect the school facilities?
(You can choose more than one) A. students B. teachers C. security guards D. leaders of all departments

10. Give your own suggestions for maintaining the school facilities.


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