THE EFFECT OF EARLY PREGNANCY ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF FEMALE SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENT

THE EFFECT OF EARLY PREGNANCY ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF FEMALE SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENT

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1      Background of the study

Each traditional African society knows its sexual marriage values, morals and educates the young ones to maintain those values. Those who hold firmly to the idea of traditional value in the society should bear in mind that there is no such thing in Africa today. It is expected that the people of Ovia-North East Local Government Area will find its disserved place in dealing with the issue of early pregnancy on the academic performance of female students. What have been said in recent years regarding this branch of study have been ill timed in view of the world’s great need of sober and satisfactory truth. According to Dania (2010), personal hygiene should be observed throughout life for healthy living. Recognizing hygiene habits for prevention of disease is important for children. In a child-to-child program, child can be an excellent health messenger and health volunteer in their own community. School children can learn easily to cultivate good habits and to mold themselves. Experts’ advice that health education should be a part in school curriculum. All health issues irrespective of their sensitivity can be inculcated in educational programs in methodological and scientific way. It has got preventive, promotive and rehabilitative dimensions. The school children can be an excellent mode to transmit information. Here the researcher hope that they can be messengers of proper hygiene practices to other children, to their parents, to the family and finally to reach out the community. In developing countries, young children spend much of their lives in the care of their brothers or sisters. Experts observed the need for teaching these older children to provide better care for their siblings. The importance of child-to-child programme is thus stressed. The child to child programme was first launched in 1978, by the Institute of Child Health, London. The main focus of child-to-child programme is activity oriented method of teaching, where emphasis is placed on the development of participatory approach of learning and teaching. In child-to-child programme the health educator may be a primary school teacher or a health worker. A number of studies concur that many young girls dropped out of school as a result of pregnancy. In Kenya, a study conducted in 1985 estimated that about 10% of female students dropped out of primary schools because they were pregnant. In 1986, 11,000 Kenyan girls dropped out of school because of pregnancy. In Ainamoi Sub County, the girls’ academic progression of teenage girls has been fluctuating over the years. However, whereas there had been issues raised with regard to teenage pregnancy and its subsequent influence on school dropouts (Newman, 2008), the literature available was really not about school girl pregnancy at all, but instead it was on the relationship between school exit and subsequent childbearing. According to Allan Guttmacher Institute (AGI) (1988), teenage pregnancy is an undesirable phenomenon. Onuzulike (2003) supported this when she observed that teenage pregnancy interferes with expectation regarding education, self-realization and economic prosperity among the affected teenagers. Ukekwe (2001) stated that stress arises even when pregnancies are planned, and to think of unplanned pregnancy means that the girl has to restructure her roles because she is inadequately prepared for parenthood. Fadeyi (1978) observed that numerous cases of school dropout; maternal mortality and morbidity, infertility, abortion and children being abandoned in gutters, dustbins, latrines and other deadly places are clear manifestations of the malady of teenage pregnancies.

Teenage out-of-wedlock pregnancy has vital implication for population growth. Nwosu (2005) opined that there is a global increase in teenage pregnancies. She observed that more than 14 million adolescents give birth each year thus contributing roughly 10 percent of the world’s total number of births. Ukekwe (2001) noted that many of these babies are unwanted by their teen mothers. These babies, she maintained suffer from starvation, sicknesses, homelessness and abandonment among other complications. Briggs (2001) identified several complications associated with teenage pregnancy. These include; high blood pressure, preeclampsia, eclampsia, malnutrition, vesico vaginal fistula, recto vaginal fistula and death. He observed that when high blood pressure is accompanied by proteinuria, the teenager’s condition can worsen to eclampsia, which if not controlled could progress to extreme hypertension, seizures, convulsion and cerebral hemorrhage.

Besides the health consequence of teenage pregnancy, the educational pursuit/attainment of most, if not all teenage parents is hampered. Gorgen, Maier and Diesfield (1993) observed that students who become pregnant rarely go back to school. Stevens-Simon and McAnarmey (1993) noted that teenage pregnancy is a marker for socio-demographic factors such as poverty and poor education. Brown (2001) collaborated this when he posited that many of the teenagers end up as school dropouts. Action Health Incorporated (2004) also described teenage pregnancy as a major cause of school dropout among girls. They maintained that the pattern of pregnancies among young unmarried adolescents has assumed an alarming proportion, which if unchecked could result in undesirable consequences. According to Osuala (2003) the patterns of teenage pregnancy and its complications need to be addressed in order to avert the perpetuation of poverty and unskilled women in the economy die to poor academic achievements. Onuzulike (2003) outlined several predictors of out-of-wedlock pregnancy during the teen years. These include; a history of sexual abuse, poverty, lack of interest in school activities, lack of career goals, poor school performance, unhappy homes and peer pressure among others. Audu (1997) also outlined several factors associated with teen pregnancy. These factors include; moral laxity, desire for wealth and materialism, unrealistic false marriage promises as well as the influx of pornography Nevertheless, doctors and scientists are doing all at their reach to enhance the growth and development in the different communities in Esan North East Local Government Area of Edo State to meet the standard and aim of health in the society the researcher therefore decided to investigate the problem of early pregnancy on the academic performance of female students in Esan North East LGA of Edo State.

STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM 

The major problem in this study is to investigate whether or not there are effects of early pregnancy on the academic performance of female students in Esan North East LGA of Edo State. 

PURPOSE OF STUDY

The purpose of the study is to investigate the case of early pregnancy on the academic performance amongst secondary school female students in Esan North East LGA of Edo State, and suggest possible solution to the problem of early pregnancy on the academic performance amongst female students.

OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY

        The researcher at the end of the enquiry will achieve the following:

1. Investigate the causes of early pregnancy on the academic performance amongst secondary school female students.

2. To arrest the activities of secondary school female students without leading to youthful exuberant like the spread of venereal diseases.

3. To counsel secondary school female students that are promiscuous to deviant from early sex and engage in meaningful activities during leisure time.

4. To encourage victims of early pregnancy to find solace in better activities towards purposeful goals.

SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

This work is important to the reader in the sense that, it will portray how best to cater for the need of our children if we want them to grow into respectable human being and have respect and value for the society as useful individuals to themselves and the society at large. It will also create in the parents developed interest, curiosity to a certain degree to arrest the activities of their children when they are becoming too fashionable with expensive materials beyond what their parents can afford. It also intends to make the reader aware that early sex is the quickest and easiest way of contacting germs that causes the most deadly communicable diseases such as gonorrhea, syphilis and HIV?AIDS. it is also meant to reveal the fact that in either towns and communities or countries where early pregnancy is the order of the day, parents and guardians will know how best to grant their children freedom and face the consequences of such act either good or bad.

SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

This study is restricted to students in some selected secondary schools in Esan North East LGA of Edo State.

a)     AVAILABILITY OF RESEARCH MATERIAL: The research material      available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study.

b)     TIME: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider         coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities        and examinations with the study.

c)     FINANCE: The finance available for the research work does not     allow for wider coverage as resources are very limited as the        researcher has other academic bills to cover.

RESEARCH QUESTIONS 

1. Is there any difference between early pregnancy and the academic performance of female students?

2. Does parent’s attitudes towards education of the female child encourage early pregnancy?

3. Does lack of parental upbringing encourage early pregnancy among female students?

4. Is there any difference between peer group formation and early pregnancy among female students?

RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS

The following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher to aid the completion of the study;

H0: parent’s attitudes towards education of the female child does not encourage early pregnancy

H1: parent’s attitudes towards education of the female child does encourage early pregnancy

H0: lack of parental upbringing does not encourage early pregnancy among female students

H2: lack of parental upbringing does encourage early pregnancy among female students

DEFINITION OF TERMS 

Early: sooner than usual or than expected

Pregnancy: A state of being pregnant

Offspring: A woman having in her uterus offspring in a stage of development before birth.

Venereal diseases: This refers to those diseases gotten from, sexual intercourse.

Promiscuous: Having many sexual partners.

Sex: Physical activity between two people in which they touch each others sexual organs.

Solace: A feeling of emotional comfort when you are sad or disappointed.

Female: Being a woman or a girl

Effect: A change that something causes in somebody.

Communicable disease: A disease that somebody can pass on to other people or communicate to somebody else.

Victims: A person, who has been attacked, injured or killed as a result of a disease.

Exuberant: Full of energy, excitement and happiness.

ORGANIZATION OF THE STUDY

This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows. Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (background of the study), statement of the problem, objectives of the study, research questions, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope of the study etc. Chapter two being the review of the related literature presents the theoretical framework, conceptual framework and other areas concerning the subject matter.     Chapter three is a research methodology covers deals on the research design and methods adopted in the study. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.  Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.


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