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IMPACT OF PARENTAL LIFE STYLE ON ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF STUDENTS IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS

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                                                           ABSTRACT

This study was set to examine impact of parental life style on academic performance of students in secondary schools. The populations of the study were parents, teachers and SS 2 students from selected secondary schools in Warri North Local Government Area of Delta State. The study developed three research objectives among which included to examine the effect of parental life style on the academic performance of student in secondary school. The study was also guided by three research questions and two hypotheses. The study employed the descriptive research design; questionnaires in addition to library research were applied in order to collect data. Primary and secondary data sources were used and data was analyzed using the chi square statistical tool at 5.99 level of significance which was presented in frequency tables and percentage. The study findings revealed that parental life styles do have an effect on the academic performance of student in secondary school. Also, there is a significant relationship between parental life style and academic performance of secondary school student. The study recommended that parents should use authoritative parenting style which is open to better upbringing of the children and model them into elitists’ persons who can benefit from the current education system for better skills development and advancement of knowledge.

 

 

                                                        CHAPTER ONE

                                                       INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to the study

Parental life style and the bond between parents and their children can influence a child’s cognitive development and learning capacities in the early years of life. This automatically makes parents stakeholders in the educational sector.Depending on the family’s financial situation and social structure, children initially learn how to make decisions, be responsible, respect others, show affection, and attend school (Dil & Bulantekin, 2011). Some parents are harsher with their children than others because of their ideals and views. Parenting approaches can differ and are impacted by things including their sociopsychological standing, their financial situation, their personal traits, the traits of their kids, and the kids’ actions. The previously listed factors shape parental behavior, which in turn shapes the parenting philosophies that are most common in rural settings. Parents are educational stakeholders, and the type of their parenting and the relationship they have with their children can influence their cognition and learning capacities in the early stages of life. Nigeria has long been regarded as a beacon of democracy, political stability, and peace in the West African subregion and Africa as a whole. It also has fast economic growth and people development (Sulaiman, 2012). It is a country rich in natural resources that recently achieved lower-middle income status (UN-Nigeria, 2012). Despite all of these advantages about Nigeria, it is faced with diverse social and economic difficulties such as corruption, poverty, unemployment, poor quality education, among others. While the government currently bears the majority of the duty for addressing these multifaceted issues, the future responsibility falls to the youth. This is achievable if youngsters are intellectually developed appropriately and receive a high-quality education.

However, the provision of excellent education in the country has not been adequately achieved due to the obstacles inherent in the educational system, as evidenced by periodic variations in students’ academic performance in national tests. These intrinsic challenges that hinder excellent education are not the only issues, since research has shown that parenting and parenting styles have an impact on pupils’ academic achievement. This is because cognitive development is influenced by parental lifestyle, and depending on the sort of parenting provided, a child’s cognition may grow favorably or poorly, affecting educational attainment. Parenting and high-quality education are critical to generating the right human resources who can contribute to development efforts and assist alleviate the nation’s challenges.

Parents play an important role in their children’s development, as evidenced by Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological Systems Theory (1979) and Merton’s Social Structure and Anomie Theory (1968). Various studies have demonstrated that parents have deep and long-lasting influence on their children’s ability to be happy, and that some parenting approaches support the development of happiness while others do not. That is, parenting, which is the regulation of children’s behavior and development with the intention that they can live a socially desirable life, adapt to their environment, and pursue their own goals (Bradley and Caldwell, 1995), necessitates certain parenting styles that have the potential to help the child develop well and be happy or to have the opposite effect on him or her. Huxley (2001) described parental life styles as the ways in which parents express their opinions about how to be a good or terrible parent by adopting parenting styles learned from their parents since they don’t know what else to do and believe that their way of parenting is the best approach. However, this is not always the case, as some parents may embrace parenting approaches that are diametrically opposed to those of their parents if they find them unsuccessful.                                                                                                                                            

Baumrind (1967) created the idea of parental life styles after identifying four crucial aspects of parenting through a study involving over 100 preschool-aged children. These included expectations of control and maturity, warmth and nurturing, communication techniques, and disciplinary tactics. Baumrind proposed that the majority of parents exhibit one of three parenting styles based on these four qualities. These parenting philosophies are permissive, authoritarian, and authoritative. Additional research by Maccoby and Martin (1983) proposed the addition of a fourth parenting style based on the two main components of responsiveness and demandingness, which are also revisions of Baumrind’s dimensions of parenting. This is the lifestyle of a neglectful or rejecting parent. Parental responsiveness (also known as parental warmth or supportiveness) relates to how parents purposefully nurture individuality, self-regulation, and self-assertion by being attuned, supportive, and accommodating to their children’s special needs and expectations. Parental demandingness, also known as behavioral control, refers to the expectations parents place on their children in order for them to become integrated into the family through maturity demands, supervision, disciplinary actions, and a readiness to confront the disobedient child.

The sort of parenting style used by parents, whether consistent or inconsistent in enforcing the aspects of parenting, has an impact on children’s developmental outcomes and personality traits later in life. Parental life styles and techniques have consistently been linked to a variety of outcomes in children, including psychological, emotional, social, and personality development problems (aggression), as well as cognitive development problems that may impair academic performance (Baumrind, 1967, 1991; Dornbusch et al, 1987; Querido et al, 2002; Turner et al, 2009). Authoritarian parenting techniques have been shown to produce children who are obedient and proficient, but who score lower on happiness, social competence, and self-esteem. Authoritarian parenting approaches tend to produce children who are joyful, capable, and successful (Maccoby, 1992). Permissive parenting frequently produces children that are unhappy and have poor self-regulation skills. These children are more likely to have issues with authority and perform poorly in school. Neglectful parenting approaches rank lowest in all life areas. These youngsters exhibit poor self-control, low self-esteem, and are less capable than their peers (Cherry, 2012).

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Given the country’s falling educational standards and quality, as well as successive governments’ efforts to solve these problems through educational reforms and large sums of money sunk into alleviating the problem, one would have expected the problems that remain inherent in our educational system, as reflected in poor performance among senior high school students, to have subsided by now. This scenario is not only alarming and concerning for the government, as most of the responsibility lies on it, but also for all players engaged, particularly parents. Lack of involvement and appreciation of the critical roles that parents and families frequently play in devising and implementing these reforms has contributed to lowering educational standards throughout time. This is because the family is the child’s first point of contact and the key socializing agent in all societies. The parenting methods that parents adopt and utilize in raising their children influence their personality traits, social competence, psychological, emotional, physical, and educational development. The type of parenting style used in single-parenting homes and both biological parenting or intact homes with a common, complementary, or conflicting styles and dimensions perceived by students based on their demographic characteristics, and the consistency or inconsistency in enforcing the dimensions of parenting by parents creates a thriving or growth inhibiting relationship and environment that affects children in all spheres of their lives, especially academic competition. That is, it causes instability and confusion in youngsters (Frazier, 2013), affecting their developmental outcomes and academic performance. Academic competency would decline along with inadequate cognitive processes, which would result in subpar student achievement. In view of the aforementioned issues, the purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of parental life style on academic performance of students in secondary schools.

1.3 Objective of the study

The primary aim of this study is to investigate the impact of parental life style on academic performance of students in secondary schools. The specific objectives are;

  1. To examine the effect of parental life style on the academic performance of student in secondary school.
  2. To ascertain the relationship between parental life style and academic performance.
  • To examine the extent in which parental life style influence student academic performance.

1.4 Research Questions

The following questions were formulated in-line with the objectives of this study;

  1. Does parental life style have an effect on the academic performance of student in secondary school?
  2. Is there any significant relationship between parental life style and the academic performance?
  • To what extents does parental life style influence the academic performance of secondary school student?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

H0: Parental life style does not have an effect on the academic performance of student in secondary school.

H1: Parental life styles do have an effect on the academic performance of student in secondary school.

H0: There is no significant relationship between parental life style and academic performance of secondary school student.

H2: There is a significant relationship between parental life style and academic performance od=f secondary school student.

1.6 Significance of the study

There have been several researches conducted on influence of behavior on social relationship in and outside school environment. Sociologists, social psychologists and guidance counselors have carried out a lot of investigations on how human beings relate to one another, and how, parents use their knowledge (experiences and skills) in training their children (young one) to learn and relate well and the reasons and importance of such relationships.

Since parents/ home is believed to be the first social contact of the child, it has a very important functions towards enhancing the social behavior and general adjustment in and outside school. Parenting styles or parent-childinteractions also appear to influence children‟s social problem – solving orientations by teaching children strategies for initiating interactions (Petit, 1992).But the extent of the influence of parenting styles and parents‟ education on student‟s social adjustment is not clearly and specifically known. The finding of this research will help the parents, teachers and students to know clearly the extent of influence of parental life styles and parents education on social adjustment of senior secondary school students. The research findings will help the parents in knowing which type of parenting style influence social adjustment most and apply it in dealing with their children for better children social adjustment. The research findings will help the teachers to choose the best leadership style (i.e the autocratic, democratic or permissive} and apply it in their classroom management so as to help students in their process of social adjustment. The findings of this study help the students or children to bear with the type of parenting style use by their parents and adjust properly in their daily home and school activities. The recommendations that emerged from this study will also go a long way in helping the government to use teachers and school guidance counselors on minimizing students‟ social adjustments problem in our senior secondary schools and society in general.

1.7 Scope and Limitations of the Study
The focus of this research is on the parental life style on academic performance of Senior Secondary School Students performance. The educational level of focus is SS 2 students from selected secondary schools in Warri North Local Government Area of Delta State. It is believed that these groups of students have been exposed to the knowledge, attitude and skills of the subject.

Limitation of Study

Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).

Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.

1.8 Operational definition of terms

Parenting: The process of raising a child from birth to independent adulthood.

Academic performance: the progress made towards the goal of acquiring educational skills, materials, and knowledge, usually spanning a variety of disciplines.

Parenting style: a constellation of attitudes or a pattern of parental authority towards the child which are conveyed to the child, creating the emotional context for the expression of parent behavior.

Life style: the habits, attitudes, tastes, moral standards, economic level, etc., that together constitute the mode of living of an individual or group.

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