An Assessment Of The Effect Of Parental Involvement On Academic Performance Of Secondary School Students

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An Assessment Of The Effect Of Parental Involvement On Academic Performance Of Secondary School Students


Abstract


Parental involvement refers to parents and family membersā€™ use and investment of resources in their childrenā€™s schooling and hence no one is more influential than parents in sending signals to their children on the importance of good performance in various school activities through role modeling, assistance and involvement. This study sought to assess Influence of parental involvement on academic performance of secondary school students. The study adopted Epsteinā€™s six types of parent involvement that entails parent education, communication, and volunteering, home visit, decision making and collaborating with the community. The methodology of the study was descriptive survey design. The target population was secondary school teachers, children and their parents. A total of 120 respondents (40 children, 50 parents and 30 teachers) were selected. Qualitative data such as demographic information and parentsā€™ involvement were coded, assigned tables to variablesā€™ categories and fed into computer. The summarized data were analyzed using descriptive statistics with the help of Statistical Packages for Social Sciences (SPSS). Frequency tables, bar-graphs and pie charts were used to present the information.

The study concludes that there is a significant relationship between parental involvements on academic outcome among children enrolled in secondary school. The study recommends parents should create time from their busy schedule to participate more in their childrenā€™s education activities if they expect improved academic performance. The study also recommended that therefore there is need for school managers and administrators to find ways of introducing programmes to ensure that fathers closely monitor and participate in; assisting their children with school work, buying children a present when they perform well, attending school meetings and discussing with teachers about their childrenā€˜s progress. There is need for the ministry of education to start programmes where workshops and seminars are held in schools to sensitize fathers on the important role they play in boosting their childrenā€˜s performance in school when they get involved in their childrenā€˜s education.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background to 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 (parentsā€™) 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 childrenā€™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 childrenā€™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 childrenā€™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 childrenā€™s standardized achievement scores; both parental education and income exerted indirect effects on parentsā€™ achievement-fostering behaviors, and subsequently childrenā€™s achievement, through their effects on parentsā€™ 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, parentsā€™ 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 parentsā€™ supervision of their childrenā€™s school lives and parents view of the importance of their childrenā€™s success in school (Borgonovi & Montt, 2012). It is beneficial for studentsā€™ performance when parents highlight the value of school and talk with their children about what they have learnt at school. Furthermore, parentsā€™ 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 childrenā€™s motivation and academic skills (Borgonovi & Montt, 2012). Therefore, this study focuses on Parental involvement on studentsā€™ academic activities in selected secondary schools.


1.2 Statement of the Problems

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 parentsā€™ involvement affects their childrenā€™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 parentsā€™ 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 learnersā€™ 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 studentsā€™ academic activities in selected secondary schools.


1.3 Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study is to critically examine the the effect of parental involvement on academic performance of secondary school students.

The specific objectives include the following:

  1. To examine the impact of parents on academic performance of secondary school students.
  2. To investigate if the socio-demographic characteristics of the parents have an impact on academic performance of secondary school students.
  3. To examine the factors affecting parental involvement in academic activities of secondary school students
  4. What are the measure that will increase the rate and involvement of parents in academic performance of secondary school students?

1.4 Research Question

  1. What is the impact of parents on academic performance of secondary school students ?
  2. Does the socio-demographic characteristics of the parents have an impact on academic performance of secondary school students ?
  3. What are the factors affecting parental involvement in academic activities of secondary school students ?
  4. What are the measure that will increase the rate and involvement of parents in academic performance of secondary school students?

1.5 Research Hypothesis

The following hypothesis was developed for the study:

  • Ho: There is no significant relationship between parental involvement and academic performance of secondary school students.
  • H1: There is significant relationship between parental involvement and academic performance of secondary school students.

1.6 Significance of the Study

The significance of the study lies in the hope that the findings may be of benefit to:

The Ministry of education where the study may be used to formulate policy that will enhance secondary school education in the classroom.

Furthermore, the study will be used by the Ministry of Education and other policy making organs of government especially in the measures they adopt in resolving the identified factors militating against secondary education.
The findings of this study will reveal the best ways or measures to be taken in order to improve the quality of secondary education in Lagos state; which helps to promote parental involvement, teachersā€™ productivity and effective school system as a whole.


1.6 Scope of the Study

This research is intended to cover all the secondary school students of the federal republic of Nigeria but due to some constraints the researcher limits his findings to schools in two local government area Kogi state Nigeria. The local governmentā€™s area are Ajaokuta and Ankpa LGA..


1.7 Limitation of the Study

The main constraint that affected this research is limited time to complete the work, and insufficient fund to finance this project.


1.8 Operational Definitions of Terms

Relative to this study, definitions to the following terms are provided in order to clarify each in the context of the topic:

Parental Involvement:

Parental involvement is a behavioural and evolutionary strategy adopted by parents, making a parental investment into the evolutionary fitness of their offspring.

Preschool:

Education given to children from birth to the age of about eight years.

Learning Outcomes:

Learning outcomes are statements that describe significant and essential learning that learners have achieved, and can reliably demonstrate at the end of a course or program.

Infant/Toddler Education:

This is a subset of secondary school education which denote the education of children from birth to age two

Classroom:

This a room in which a class of pupils or students is taught.

Childhood:

Childhood is the age span ranging from birth to adolescence.

Education:

Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, culture, and habits.

Family Values:

These are values supposedly learned within a traditional family unit, typically those of high moral standards and discipline.

Parent:

A parent consists of a person whose gamete resulted in a child, a male through the sperm, and a female through the ovum.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations

5.1 Introduction

This section presents the summary of the findings. Additionally, conclusions and recommendations, made in line with study objectives, are given. Finally are suggestions for further studies.


5.2 Summary of Findings

Findings were summarized based on the objectives of the study.

The first objective of the study sought to establish the frequency of parental involvement in secondary school education in selected public and private schools In District III Ikoyi Lagos. Findings revealed that despite the high number of parents who always prepared time and space for their children at home, only 4(13.3%) would always assist their children in homework. The findings further indicated that a high proportion 17(56.7%) of teachers reported that parents rarely attended meetings in schools which are related to their childrenā€™s progress both socially and academically.

The second objective of the study sought to investigate if the socio-demographic characteristics of the parents have an impact on academic performance of secondary school students. Findings of the study indicated that majority 60(60%) of the pupils reported that socio-demographic characteristics of the parents have an impact on academic performance of secondary school students. The results show that the relationship between parental involvement and pupilsā€™ performance was significant. This implies that parental involvement influence students performance. Therefore, the more the involvement of parents in childrenā€™s education the higher the pupilsā€™ performance academically.

The third objective of the study sought the factors affecting parental involvement in secondary school education. It was found that a big number 35(70%) of the parents reported that parents do not usually visit school whenever pupils do any exam. Parents perceived themselves as incapable of being involved in the education of their children because they either were ignorant of how to be involved or because they felt incapacitated due to the little education they had. Therefore their understanding of parent involvement in education was clearly limited.

The fourth objective of the study sought to suggest ways of improving parentsā€™ involvement in improving learning achievements of learners Challenges such as inadequate teaching staff, poor infrastructure in schools and lack of learnersā€™ active involvement were majorly reported to be barring parents from involving in childrenā€™s education. Parents emphasized more on self-efficacy in upbringing and education of their children. It is thus necessary to assist parents have self- worth in order to assist their children with the necessities of education.


5.3 Conclusions

Parent involvement in childrenā€™s education at early stages is characterized by different levels of interactions between educators and parents. However, all teachers and parents do not engage in all activities on all types of involvement simultaneously. It is evident that parents do not always engage in helping their children with homework at home.

The study concludes that there is a significant relationship between parental involvements on academic performance among children enrolled in ECDE centres. Therefore, effective academic improvement requires educators, parents and the community as a whole to engage in parenting, communicating, volunteers, learning at home, decision making and collaboration with the community. Thus parental involvement in their childrenā€™s education is a strong predictor of the learnersā€™ overall academic performance. Therefore, if the child is to achieve more, the parent likewise must be more involved in their learning.

Involving parents in each type of involvement has certain challenges, which have been highlighted in the theoretical framework. Several reasons can explain the insufficient involvement based on home based challenges such as low level of education and poverty. Therefore, stakeholders need to be cognizant of such challenges first before designing measures aimed at fostering productive parental and community involvement in learnersā€™ academic performance.


5.4 Recommendations of the Study

Various recommendations were suggested drawn from the study findings for various stake holders and for future research.

5.4.1 Recommendations for Parents

Findings revealed that parents were involved in the childrenā€™s academic performance but at different frequencies. It is therefore recommended that parents in particular should create time from their busy schedule to participate more in their childrenā€™s education activities if they expect improved academic performance.

5.4.2 Recommendations for School Managers and Administrators
  1. Findings indicated that involvement of parents in childrenā€™s education is absolutely significant yet the level of parental participation in school activities is wanting. Therefore there is need for school managers and administrators to find ways of introducing programmes to ensure that fathers closely monitor and participate in; assisting their children with school work, buying children a present when they perform well, attending school meetings and discussing with teachers about their childrenā€˜s progress. This is likely to motivate children to work harder and to do their school work better. This can be achieved if open days can be introduced in school where once in a term fathers come to school to view childrenā€˜s work and discuss with teachers.
  2. There is also need for school managers and administrators to have programmes where once in a term or in a year they have a special day for fathers and their children to educate them on the important role they play in their childrenā€˜s education and development.
  3. It is evident that parents were not fully involved in childrenā€™s education due to lack of knowledge on the importance of parental involvement. Schools therefore need to design special parent education programmes that cater for the needs of the parents with parenting skills. Schools are not averse to having parents volunteering their services. They therefore need to provide some form of training to parents, so that the assistance provided will have a meaningful impact on the childā€™s development.
  4. It emerged from the study that several challenges hinder effective involvement of parents in improvement of learning achievements of pupils in secondary school schools. In order to curb the challenges, both parents and teachers should collectively explore alternative avenues and measures that circumvent the problem appropriately to eliminate unrealistic expectations and strain on parental involvement. The teachers should therefore empower parents if they feel incapacitated due to their low education level.

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Frequently Asked Questions


How does parental involvement in education impact student achievement?

Empirical findings have demonstrated a positive association between parental involvement in education and academic achievement (PĆ©rez SĆ”nchez et al., 2013; TĆ”rraga et al., 2017), improving childrenā€™s self-esteem and their academic performance (Garbacz et al., 2017) as well as school retention and attendance (Ross, 2016).

How does having two parents affect studentsā€™ academic performance?

Students with two parents operating in supportive roles are 52% more likely to enjoy school and get straight Aā€™s than students whose parents are disengaged with whatā€™s going on at school.

What is the role of parents and family in academic achievement?

Since majority of school students spend most of their time at home with their parents and family, therefore parents and family may have a significant role in the academic achievement of school students. A volume of research has been focusing the role of parental involvement in the academic achievement of students.

Does parental involvement in school readiness correlate with parentsā€™ educational attainment?

It appears that a parentā€™s level of involvement in school readiness correlates significantly with that parentā€™s own educational attainment.Ā 

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