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This research work investigated the effect of Truancy on the performance of adolescent students; a case study of secondary in Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos State.
The subject of this research comprised one hundred (100) students randomly selected from five secondary schools in Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos State.
Data Analysis was carried out by the use of Chi-square with the independent samples used to test the significance between grouped means of the hypothesis statistics.
Based on these findings, some recommendations which could be of immense benefit to students, teachers, parents and the community at large.
1.1 INTRODUCTION BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
No one, not even a nation has ever argued the fact that education is a veritable instrument for liberating people from the shackles of ignorance, poverty, illiteracy and the likes. Longe (1999) opines that “there is over-whelming evidence that education is a weapon in the fight against poverty, there can be little doubt that educating the children improves their changes of escaping poverty”. In the same vein, education is also useful to fight for one’s right, itself being a basic natural human right.
The role of education toward the development of individuals in the society and the nation as a whole cannot be over-emphasize, hence, there is the need to give proper, adequate and equal education to everybody regardless of sex, race or tribe.
Moreover, Anuforo (2007) says “education is a process, product and a discipline. In order to transmit norms and values of a given people” .
Okafor (1987) opines further that “education embraces all experiences through which and individual acquires knowledge or ideas, develops his intellect and strengthens his will”.
However, upon the great importance of education to every individual, some students even with free opportunity to education still run away from schools which made them to be known as truant students. This issue of truancy has being a major concern of all and sundry especially government and parents in our society.
Truancy is that abnormal acts in which the rules and regulations of the school authority are violated by students. Truancy can be described as an act where by secondary students especially adolescents from school activities without permission and without genuine reasons. Truancy, according to the US Department of Education, is the first sign of trouble; students start giving up, skip school and find life outside the school environment lively more than the school environment.
Research data tells us that students who become truant and eventually drop out of school put themselves at a long term problem in becoming productive citizens. Truancy has great implication in that it has a broad effect in the general norms and value of the entire school and the entire society, therefore it is important to note that the phenomenon exist from the inception of generation.
Moreover, the subjection has been a great concern for many Nigerians especially the teachers and the school administrators. The effort of the government on education has been found difficult to be ascertained because of truancy among students which has caused a lot problem to the educational system. This has brought about backwardness among the students, the educational policy makes and educational evaluators as it affects their studies and also affects the policy of the government.
Truant students especially the adolescents would leave their homes in the morning, but instead of going to school, they enjoy visiting cyber cafes, going to boy or girl friends houses, loiter on the streets either with school uniforms or may have changed into mufti in a hidden corner. Truancy has led many children to commit crimes such as armed robbery, rapes, and secret cults and pick pocketing. It is very obvious that among the criminals paraded on Television by Police everyday include students who have supposed to be in school. Many unwanted pregnancies resulted into abortions are the results of truancy. Akinloye etal (1997) reveals that truants will seek solace in drugs he or she becomes a tout, addict, smuggler, area boy, armed robber, such a child then becomes a burden and a threat to the society. This study is therefore geared into investing the effects of truancy among adolescent students.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The importance of this work is to investigate the effect of truancy on the academic performance of adolescent students in Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos State.
Ife Abodunrin (2011) quoted from Erikson’s Theory of psychosocial development described an adolescent as a student of 12-18 years of age.
This project work is particular about adolescent students in the secondary schools in Alimosho Local Government. Truancy has brought about career degeneration and backwardness in secondary schools in Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos State, because of their irregular attendance and presence in schools. Truancy also brings about poor academic performance in many schools.
In Alimosho Local Government, students seek academic work as a threat because of many factors within and outside the school. It has become the order of the day, seeing students roam on the streets when they are supposed to be at school. Many Alimosho Local Government adolescent students have been arrested by the Surveillance of the State Governor of Lagos State and have been taken to Welfare Centre for rehabilitation. These adolescents falls between J.S.S 3 – SSS3 respectively.
They are the future of this great nation, in so much that this problem has to be looked into for proper correction. Furthermore, due to the adolescent students irregular attendance in school and the general breaking down of law and order of schools, stealing, thuggery and all sorts of delinquent behaviours have become a common phenomenon, which is a result of student low interest in academic work among others. It is therefore not going to be out of place to investigate the effect of this social problem on the performance of such students.
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
This study will seek to examine the factors responsible for truancy in secondary schools and the effects such factors have on the academic performance of the students. Hence the purpose of the study will seek to assess the effects of truancy on the academic performance of secondary students in an urban environment
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The study will help to make necessary correction by which the educational system in Alimosho Local Government can be restructure. It will help solve the problem of truancy and as well as reshape the lives they would be useful for themselves, their parents and the society at large.
The finding of the study will help to encourage the teachers to cultivate the habit of delivery their lessons in a manner that would motivate students’ interest. The finding and recommendation will also help educational policy makes and planners in their planning strategies.
Furthermore, the outcome will enable the parents to understand truants and know them. The study hopefully will also act as a model or reference for subsequent research work by individuals who may want to research this area. Teachers would be exposed to various juvenile acts, the students which they might likely be involve in as a result of their irregular attendance in school.
1.5 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The extent to which there is a clear relationship between students’ academic performance and truancy is the focus of this study.
The following research questions are therefore, posed to be answered in the course of this study?
1. Is there any significant difference between the academic performance of adolescent students who are truants and those who are not?
2. Is there any significant effect of home environment on adolescent students academic performance and playing of truancy?
3. Is there any significant effects of school factors and students playing of truancy?
4. Is there any significant effect of peer group on students playing of truancy?
1.6 REASEARCH HYPOTHESES
In other word to answer major research questions four (4) null hypotheses were raised thus:
H01: There is no significant difference between the academic performance of adolescent students who are truants and those who are not.
H02: There is no significant effect of home environment on adolescent students academic performance and playing of truancy.
H03: There are no significant effect of school factors and students playing of truancy.
H04: There is no significant effect of peer group on students playing of truancy.
1.7 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This study was carried out to find the effect of truancy on the academic performance of adolescent students in Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos State.
1.8 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
This research study is limited to selected secondary schools in Alimosho Local Government Schools in Lagos State, due to financial constraints, time factor, attitude of the respondents and inadequate literature.
1.9 OPERATIONAL DEFINITION OF THE TERMS
EFFECT: It is a change that somebody or something causes in somebody or something else. It is also a result or an outcome of something.
TRUANCY: It is described as a way whereby a school pupil stays away from school without permission or reasons. It is also a habitual absenteeism.
ACADEMIC: It is related with education, especially studying in schools and universities. An act of reading and studying books.
PERFORMANCE: An act of how well or badly you do something, how well or badly something works
ADOLESCENTS: A child who is developing from a child into an adult, which falls between the ages of 13 and 18 and the problems they face for example, boys and girls with their experiences.
ABORTION: This is the act of deliberate ending of a pregnancy at an early stage, Tough a medical operation.
JUVENILE: This is related to young people who are not yet adults. A young person either a girl or a boy.
DISCIPLINE: This is an act of training people so that they will obey orders and control their own feelings and behavior. It is also the method of training one’s mind or body to control behavior; punishment follows if they do not comply or obey those rules.
DELINQUENCY: This is bad or criminal behaviour usually of young people. It is an anti-social act or deviate, stealing, bullying, rioting etc are delinquencies.
DEVELOPMENT: The latest in a number of real or imaginary events. Gradual growth or somebody or something, so that it becomes more advanced, stronger etc. it is also the process of producing or creating something new or more advanced e.g a new product.
TRUANT: A child who stays away from school without a good reason. A child who absent from school without a permission.
EDUCATION: It is an act of teaching and learning. Way of acquiring knowledge. Ability b develop skills. Method of imparting new experiences into somebody. It is also an agent of socialization.
ENVIRONMENT: The conditions in which you live and work, that affect your life. The world that we live in. It is also the conditions that affect the behavior and development of somebody or something.
SOCIETY: Group of people who live together with shared ideas. People with a common interest. People in general, living together in communities. The group of people who share the same customs, laws, etc.
THUGGERY: An act of being violent. A violent behavior usually a criminal acts or behavior. Brutal and hard.
DELINQUENT: Young people with their behavior showing a tendency to commit crimes, especially “JUVENILE DELINQUENT SOCIAL PROBLEM”. All the problems associated with the society.
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