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Family Disputes ...


This study was set to examine the influence of family dispute on academic performance of secondary school students. The populations of the study were basically teachers and students from selected secondary schools in Enugu state. The study developed four research objectives among which included to ascertain the effect of family dispute on the academic performance of secondary school students in Enugu state. The study was also guided by four research questions and two hypotheses. The study employed the survey 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 0.05% level of significance which was presented in frequency tables and percentage. The study findings revealed that family dispute do have an effect on the academic performance of secondary school students in Enugu state. Also, family conflict and instability do have an impact on secondary school student academic performance in Enugu state. It was concluded that families must recognize the effects of continuous dispute, especially on their children’s minds, even if disagreement is inevitable in human relationships. The study recommended that parents and teachers should unite with a common goal of fully assisting pupils to excel academically and socially.






                                                 CHAPTER ONE


1.1 Background to the study

The sole objective of education is to develop a valuable citizen; a citizen who is beneficial to himself, the society in which he lives, and, more broadly, the global community. It can be difficult to give a common definition of education. Nonetheless, education can be defined in three ways: philosophically, socially, and psychologically. From a philosophical stance, education might be characterized as the process of initiating individuals into meaningful activities for future generations. These important activities include desirable skills, attitudes, and values. Sociology defines education as the process by which individuals are socialized and taught societal norms and values. Also, from a psychological standpoint, education refers to the alteration of learners’ behavior in a controlled context. According to Etzioni (1984), an educational institution is a social organization that is designed or organized to achieve specific goals. The school, as a social organization and instrument, assesses its students to determine how well it is meeting its goals. This refers to students’ cognitive development, which determines the quality and quantity of learning that has occurred, as well as their moral standards and psychomotor development.

            Family is a unit made up of the father, mother and children. This pattern is known as the nuclear family. On the other side, the extended family or kin-group is primarily present in Nigeria, India, and other West African countries. Family background resulting from marriage institution, which takes various forms such as monogamy, polygamy, and polyandry. The family’s role in the socialization of the kid includes moral and intellectual training, character development, love for others, and vocational training.

            The future of any society lies in its ability to train and socialize its young ones. The stability of its institutions and political systems, the productivity of its industrial resources, and the creativity of its intellectual abilities all reflect the level of achievement of the adults in society who have been tasked with making positive progress and nurturing its adolescents. These elements, such as a child’s educational setting, home situation, peer groups, and societal culture, all have an impact on their learning abilities. The two fundamental socializing institutions of society are the home and the school. According to Daramola (2006), there is no place in the world where people do not have uneven access to essential facilities. These discrepancies are documented in all aspects of life, including education, health, and other areas, with the resulting impacts on social strata. (Stevenson, David, and Baker 1987) investigate the relationship between parental involvement in schooling and the child’s school achievement in a study on family-school relationships and the child’s school performance using a nationally representative sample of American households. They tested three hypotheses using a sample of 179 children, parents, and teachers. The findings suggest that the higher the mother’s educational standing, the larger the level of parental involvement in school activities. The younger the child is, the greater the degree of parental involvement, and children of parents who are more involved in school activities perform better in school than children with parents who are less involved. They found support for the three hypotheses after analyzing cross-sectional data. The mother’s educational status is related to the degree of parental involvement in schooling, with more educated parents being more involved. Parental involvement is related to the child’s academic success. Parents are also more involved in their children’s school activities while they are young. The mother’s educational level and the child’s age are better indicators of parental participation in school for boys than for girls. They do not, however, discover a direct influence of maternal educational status on school performance in the absence of parental involvement in school activities; they explain these findings in light of the relationship between families and schools.     Children’s social development in modern countries increasingly takes place within institutional contexts. Day care, preschool, and normal school are essential components of a tymeal child’s environment from infancy until late adolescence. Schools are environments that provide a sequence of developmental tasks for youngsters. The nature of these tasks varies: schools present children with a set of new interpersonal relationships that they must integrate into their social world; schools demand cognitive performance; and schools demand socialization of the child to the student role (Lefton 1994; obsolete Youniss and Smollar, 1985). In all of these developmental activities, the family is an invaluable resource for the child. The social development of the child can be viewed as a project of the child’s parents, and the educational institution (Litwak obsolete and Meyer, 1999).

            Research on the relationship between families and schools has typically focused on providing a successful in-home learning environment for the child. This area of research has tended to focus on familiar qualities that may influence a child’s cognitive development and later academic success (Scott-Jones, 1984). Another body of study examines how parents inculcate motivation and good attitudes in their children, as well as the implications these attributes have on academic success (Bloom 1981). While these research traditions have focused on the development of children’s cognitive skills and motivation, they have paid less attention to the study of parental involvement in school activities. To effectively assist their child in his or her efforts to meet the demands of school, parents need to have knowledge about their child’s schooling and access to resources to help their child.

(Coleman 1997) proposes that family influence can be separated into components such as economic, human, and social capital, Economic capital refers to the financial resources human capital provides parents with the knowledge resources necessary to create supportive learning environments for their children. In contrast, family social capital is defined by the relationships that develop between family members. It is through these relationships that children gain access to the economic, human, and cultural resources of their families. Similarly, (Pierre 1998) suggests social status and ethnic/racial group have differing degrees of access to those forms of cultural capital that support academic success. Within social groups, parents provide experiences that result in children developing similar tastes, preferences. Eventually, these attributes are related to social status and ethnic/racial group differences in academic and occupational outcomes. A number of theories have been developed to examine those parent-child interactions that provide children with differential access to family resources.

            Steinberg’s family model. In a set of investigating, proposes that in understanding family influences, it is important to disentangle three different aspects of parenting. These include parenting style, which provide the emotional context in which parent- child interacting occur. The goals that parents establish for their children; and the practical adopted by parents to help children attain those goals. It has been shown, for example, that a parenting style defined as authoritative is related to positive academic achievement (Darling and Stenberg 1993). Such a style creates a context in which parents encourage their children’s independence and individuality, provide opportunities for children to be involved in family decision making, expect high standards for their children, and have warm relationships with their children. (Redding 1999) indicates that in relation to academics outcomes, the potential limitations associated with poor economic circumstances can be overcomes by parents who provide stimulating, supportive, and language rich experiences for their children. It is important, however, to recognise the nature of the interrelationships between family characteristics and more refined family influences.

   Dispute can be defined as the lack of peace in an environment. Dispute in a family therefore refers to a situation whereby the smooth interaction and relation among members of a family is disrupted because of one thing or another. It can be between the two parents or between parents and their children. Dispute in a family can be as a result of lack of trust, drunkenness, lack of dialogue, lack of respect, joblessness and idleness. It comes in form of fights, quarrels, spouse battering, child abuses and child molestation. It can result to a bad atmosphere in the home, separation or even divorce.
According to Walker (1999), research have demonstrated that when one type of violence is prevalent in the family, other types are more likely to occur, and that family violence is directly related to community violence, other forms of aggression, and gender-based violence. Law enforcement in many nations will not intervene in what is commonly referred to as a “domestic quarrel,” despite psychological research indicating that without such involvement, abusers are unlikely to seek help to cease their battering behavior. According to research, there is a clear link between domestic and community violence. According to Golden (2000), a history of abuse can enhance the chance of future abusive behaviour.  According to Steinberg (1996), parental conflict and hostility, as well as a conflict-filled home environment, are associated with offspring’s personal or violent crimes.

Murphy and O’Farrell (1994) emphasized that parents have a significant influence on their children’s development. As a result, if parents continue to fight in their homes, their children will undoubtedly suffer as they grow older. They also stated that children learn by mimicking and identifying with their parents and other prominent adults. If the children grow up in a violent home, they may repeat the behavior in their own families unless intervention is implemented. The family is the most essential impact on children, but they are also active participants of a wide system of social institutions such as school, employment, and community. Parental participation and education help both the family and the child function more effectively. It has been discovered that parental participation in a child’s life might have long-term consequences for their behavior. According to Steinberg (1996), disputed assets are an important part of family functioning that frequently eclipses the influence of family structure on child development. He also notes that research has proven that love and at least some mild parental control are the most effective ways to support children’s healthy and social development. According to Seifert and Hoffnung (1997), children who have spent years in circumstances of neglect or abuse experience extreme stress. They also claim that students frequently receive long-term assistance from their parents or other adults at home, as well as substantial support from teachers and other school personnel. Involving parents in learning activities with their children at home is one type of parental participation that many educators believe is critical to the child’s learning. If the family is in conflict, parents will not have time for their children.

 Men are more likely to use violence in order to gain and maintain power and control over others. Domestic violence, as defined by the APA task force on violence and the family, is a pattern of abusive behavior that includes a wide range of physical, sexual, and psychological maltreatment used by one person in an intimate relationship against another to gain unfair power or maintain that person’s misuse of power, control, and authority. According to Berk (1999), one of the most common consequences of child abuse and neglect is poor school performance. Such youngsters frequently struggle with social relationships, problem solving, and the ability to deal with unfamiliar or stressful situations. According to studies carried out, some abused or neglected children develop aggressive behaviour patterns, others become withdrawn while others even get PTSD or major depression.
 According to Kiura (1999), a successful husband-wife relationship is dependent on self-knowledge, understanding of the spouse, balance of individuality, mutual relationship, proper conflict resolution, sexual harmony, and strong skills in mutual discussion and communication. He also believes that parents must take responsibility for their children’s eternal fate, educate them, prepare them for life, and lead them in the proper direction. If parents cannot get along, their children will suffer as well. They suffer not only at home, but also when they go to school or visit friends, since they take their parents’ pain with them.