PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT ON STUDENTS’ ACADEMIC ACTIVITIES IN SELECTED SE

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PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT ON STUDENTS’ ACADEMIC ACTIVITIES IN SELECTED SECONDARY SCHOOLS

 

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1     BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY        

Parental involvement in education has been defined as parents’ interactions and participation with schools and their children to promote academic success (Hill et al., 2004). Such interactions extend beyond the engagement with schools, to home life expectations and values for education that are communicated directly and indirectly to children. These conceptualizations focus on individual students, their families and the schools.

Parental involvement is a combination of commitment and active participation on the part of parents in schools and students matters, especially those related to their involvement in schools. Parental involvement in the school, like many other forms of community partnerships such as the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) or Parent Teacher Organization (PTO), helps to improve students’ success. Limited or lack of parental involvement has been considered part of the shortcomings of the children’s education for at least 40 years (Hornby & Lafaele, 2011). Various aspects of parental involvement such as participation, partnerships and a variety form of interactions have differential effects on students’ academic outcomes (Domina, 2005; Fan, 2001; Fan & Chen, 2001; Jeynes, 2005, cited in Fan & Williams 2010).

Parent involvement is one factor that has been consistently related to a child’s increased academic performance (Hara & Burke, 1998; Hill & Craft, 2003; Marcon, 1999; Stevenson & Baker, 1987). While this relation between parent involvement and a child’s academic performance is well established, studies have yet to examine how parent involvement increases a child’s academic performance McLoyd (2005) Lareau, Annette. 1999) argue that since education influences parents’ knowledge, beliefs, values, and goals about child rearing, it thus significantly influences their (parents’) behaviours that are directly related to their children’s school performance.

Thus, students whose parents have higher levels of education may have an enhanced regard for learning, more positive ability beliefs, a stronger work orientation, and they may use more effective learning strategies than children of parents with lower levels of education. Conger et al, (2002), opine that attainment of higher levels of education by parents may be access to resources, such as income, time, energy, and community contacts, that allow for greater parental involvement in a child’s education. Thus, the influence of parents’ level of education on student outcomes might be positive.

From the perspective of these scholars, parental involvement is beneficial to students. Such involvements benefit students as well as teachers, the school, parents themselves, the community and other children within the families. Everything possible should therefore be done by the school system to encourage parents to get involved in school affairs.

Parental education is an important index of socioeconomic status, and as noted, it predicts children’s educational and behavioral outcomes. However, McLoyd ( 2005) has pointed out the value of distinguishing among various indices of family socioeconomic status, including parental education, persistent versus transitory poverty, income, and parental occupational status, because studies have found that income level and poverty might be stronger predictors of children’s cognitive outcomes compared to other social economic status indices (Duncan et al., 1994; Stipek, 1998).

In fact, research suggests that parental education is indeed an important and significant unique predictor of child achievement. For example, in an analysis of data from several large-scale developmental studies, (Duncan and Brooks-Gunn, 1997) concluded that maternal education was linked significantly to children’s intellectual outcomes even after controlling for a variety of other social economic status indicators such as household income. Davis-Kean, (2005)found direct effects of parental education, but not income, on European American children’s standardized achievement scores; both parental education and income exerted indirect effects on parents’ achievement-fostering behaviors, and subsequently children’s achievement, through their effects on parents’ educational expectations.

Some literature suggests that parents and community involvement in school activities that are linked to student learning have a greater effect on academic achievement than more general forms of involvement (Henderson & Mapp, 2002). More importantly, parents’ involvement activities may have a greater effect on academic achievement when the form of involvement revolves around specific academic needs. For example, Sheldon and Epstein (2005) found that activities that engage families and children in discussing mathematics at home can contribute to higher academic performance in mathematics when compared to other types of involvement. Harrison and Hara (2010) also concluded in a research done in North Carolina that family and community involvement can have a powerful and positive impact on pupil outcomes.

When parents talk to their children about school as well as when they ask their children how about what they do in schools, all signal parents’ supervision of their children’s school lives and parents view of the importance of their children’s success in school (Borgonovi & Montt, 2012). It is beneficial for students’ performance when parents highlight the value of school and talk with their children about what they have learnt at school. Furthermore, parents’ discussions of non-school related matters such as political or social issues, books, films or television programmes with their children has been shown to have a positive effect on children’s motivation and academic skills (Borgonovi & Montt, 2012). Therefore, this study focuses on Parental involvement on students’ academic activities in selected secondary schools.

1.2     STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

The lack of concern by parents in the running and management of schools is worrisome (Mokete (1997) and Maphorisa (1987). As a result their impact on nurturing students towards academic achievement is minimal. This study attempts to find out the extent to which the parents’ involvement affects their children’s general academic success in secondary schools in Nigeria.

Parent involvement is one factor that has been consistently related to a child’s increased academic performance (Hara & Burke, 1998; Hill & Craft, 2003; Marcon, 1999; Stevenson &Baker, 1987). While this relation between parents’ involvement and a child’s academic performance is well established, studies have yet to examine how parent involvement increases a child’s academic performance. Moreover, few studies have examined parental involvement as a primary socializing agent, as direct predictor(s) of learners’ senses of self-efficacy, engagement and intrinsic motivation. These problems make it glating that there is a need to carry out a study on Parental involvement on students’ academic activities in selected secondary schools.

1.3     OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY  

The general objective of this study is to examine Parental involvement on students’ academic activities in selected secondary schools. The specific objectives of this study include the following:

1.      To determine the extent to which the parents are involved in academic activities of students in secondary schools in Ikej LGA.

2.      To find out the factors affecting Parental involvement on students’ academic activities in secondary schools in Ikej LGA.

3.      To assess the role of parent in students’ academic activities in secondary schools in Ikej LGA.

4.      To ascertain the prospect of Parental involvement on students’ academic activities in secondary schools in Ikej LGA.

5.      To investigate if Parental involvement on students’ academic activities influences the academic performance of students in secondary schools in Ikej LGA.

1.4     RESEARCH QUESTIONS

The relevant research questions related to this study include the following:

1.      What is the extent to which the parents are involved in academic activities of students in secondary schools in Ikej LGA?

2.      What are the factors affecting Parental involvement on students’ academic activities in secondary schools in Ikej LGA?

3.      What is the role of parent in students’ academic activities in secondary schools in Ikej LGA?

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