Abstract: The study investigated home factors and academic performance among Secondary School students in Ibesikpo Asutan Local Government Area. The population of the study consist of 1,873 students in SS2 class in all the six (6) public secondary schools in the study area. Three research questions were raised and three research hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. Literature related to the study was reviewed. A survey research design was adopted for the study. A sample size of Two Hundred  respondents were selected from five  public Secondary Schools under the study area using stratified sampling techniques.
The main instrument used for data collection for the study was Economics Achievement Test (EAT). The result from the instrument was analyzed statistically using independent t-test statistics at 0.05 level of significant. Findings from the study revealed that students whose parents are highly educated performed better academically than those whose parents are not highly educated, also students whose parent income is high performed better academically than those from low income parents, finally, students whose parents has better occupation performs better than students whose parents do not have better occupation.
Home Factors and Academic Performance among Secondary Schools Students
1.1 Background to the Study
A home is a place where one lives permanently, especially as a member of a family or household. It is a place of residence or refuge. A home is not a mere transient shelter. Its essence lies in the personalities of the people who live in it. Home factors comprise of all human and materials factors that affect an individual development in the family where one live. According to Anene, (2005) home factors are the aggregate of all internal and external conditions affecting the existence, growth and welfare of organisms. It is an influence an individual came in contact with after the hereditary has been through the gene plasma. The family as a basic social unit of the society is the first social group that a child meets on earth.
A number of conditions prevailing in the home have some effects on child’s upbringing and his way of behaving. Hence, the social climate or environment in which an individual finds himself or herself to a large extent determines his or her behaviour and personality development. Home factors have been of a great important in shaping the performance of children in schools worldwide. This is because academic performance is usually as a result of motivation that children get from the people they interact with in their initial stages of life.
Home factors comprises of the level of education of parents, parental socio-economic status, family size and other factors which are essential aspects in development of student’s personality and academic function (Higbea & Thompson 2010). The socio-economic status of parents is capable of affecting the behaviour of the children and determines their aspiration. Parents with high socio-economic status often have more success in preparing their children for school because they typically have access to wide range of providing their young children with high quality child-care, books and encourage children in various learning activities at home. They also have easy access to information regarding their children’s health, as well as social, emotional and cognitive development (Ojo and Yilma 2010), Ojo and Yilma also noted that in all socio-economic groups, parents face major challenges when it comes to providing optimal care and education for their children and these challenges are more pronounced in poor families.
This, according to them, is because sometimes, when the basic necessities are lacking, parents must place top priority on housing, food, clothing and health care, regarding education materials and books as luxuries. They added that poor families may also have inadequate or limited access to community resources that promote and support children’s development and school readiness. They further asserted that these disadvantages can negatively affect families decisions regarding their children development and learning. This situation, according to Ojo and Yilma, may also expose the infants poor parents to a greater risk of entering kindergarten schools unprepared, unlike their peers from rich parents.
Parents’ education is another family background factor which influences the academic achievement of students. Students under motivated condition, exhibits purposeful behaviour aimed at achieving academic set goals. The achievement of these goals determines the motive. The situational perspective according to the scholars focuses on learning context. These scholars further identified to factors that greatly influence students’ motivation. These are: interpersonal factors such as curiosity, perseverance, and autonomy (intrinsic-factors) and environmental factors such as parents, peers and sibling (extrinsic factors).
Research shows the supportive and attentive parenting practices positively affect academic achievement (Eamon, 2005). In addition, high parental aspirations have been associated with increasing students’ interest in education (Majoribanks, 2005). The effect of parental motivation and involvement in their children’s school has on academic achievement is less clear (Domina 2005), parental motivation and involvement in school has been linked to both positive and negative influences on academic achievement (McNeal, 2001, Domina, 2005).
Explanations for this discrepancy are not conclusive. It is thought that the type of involvement and motivation may make a difference and that in some cases parents become involved after their child has already had academic difficulties (Domina, 2005, McNeal, 2001). Other recent research has found more conclusively that while parental motivation may not help academic achievement, it does help prevent behaviorual problems (Domina, 2005).
Parental occupation is also an important home factor that influences academic achievement of students. The occupation of one’s parents may determine to a large extent one’s opportunity to attend secondary school or not. Ezeji (2001) noted that parents like their children to take to their occupation, like parents who are lawyers, doctors, musicians among others. Examples of such people in the country include Gani faweiheni, the prominent human right lawyer, Oliver Akalite (Oliver De coque) and Osita Osadebe who were famous musicians each of these great men had one or more of his children in his type of occupation.
Uwaoma (2006) asserted that most vocational students were children whose parents were farmer or craftsmen. In Nigeria most children whose parents cannot afford to pay for high cost of formal education enroll into apprenticeship programmes such as carpentry, brick laying, petty trading and others. In the study area, there is a seeming general poor performance among secondary school students.
Government, parents, teachers and students blame one another for students’ poor performance in schools. Parents blame teachers for lack of dedication to duties and the teachers blame government for poor salaries hence they are poorly motivated, parents also accuse government for not equipping the schools with learning materials, government blame parents for not doing good home work and the students are blamed for lack of discipline and dedication to their studies.
Home Factors and Academic Performance among Secondary Schools Students
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Despite the zeal of parents to send their children to school, most time cannot meet up with necessary financial assistance to accomplish it, academic performance of students varies from one individual to another. For example, some students withdraw from school without completing their course work even at the primary level. This situation has attracted a lot of research work into the causes of differences in academic or school performance among students. Literature have shown that factors like home factors, the society, hereditary, the school itself and other factors could be held responsible for this.
Hence, there is need for this study to be carried out to find out how home factor can affect academic performance among secondary schools students in Ibesikpo Asutan Local Government Area.