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1.1 Background of the Study
Broken home is regarded as one of the serious social problem that causes psychological problem in individuals. This is because it makes permanent and indelible impact on its victims. In fact the traits of the broken home remain with the individual or victim forever no matter how much happy he or she becomes in life later. It is not only the individual that suffers from this social ill but also the society shares this negative impact too since this individual that could have contributed meaningfully to its socio-economic development has been affected negatively Beattie, (2010).
Many people are aware that marriage is the foundation laying for home building and divorce which is the major factor that causes broken homes has had a long history and what ever the ultimate out-come may be the solution is not out of sight. On the one hand there are those who will abolish the practice entirely while on the other hand, some feel that broken home is unavoidable human right since genesis. Our legal system representing a kind of compromise between two positions. As a result of this trend, a great number of people began to argue as to what measures or steps to be taken in order to avert the dreadful problem of broken home that have eaten deep into the fabrics of the society.
It is worthy of note that not all marriages stands the test of time. This leads to what is called “BROKEN HOME” which is the separation of a man and a woman who were formally married and living together. This separation could either be permanent or temporary it might be as a result of divorce caused by misunderstanding and quarreling either for economic, social, psychological or emotional reasons.
Hartow, (2009) stated that home is the most important place for children but when the atmosphere of the home is not conducive for instance when there are conflicts and quarrels between the family members in the home, there will be no co-operation and mutual understanding, especially among parents which in turn affects the child’s future.
He further stated that causes of broken homes in Nigeria are many and differ from society to society though, there are some major causes that are applicable to almost every part of the world. The effects of broken home, also varies depending on the types and nature of the environment.
The issue of broken home has drawn the attention of several individuals, organization and countries most especially in the under developed countries (third world) as to what measure to be taken to arrest the ugly trend.
This research project is therefore aimed at contributing its quota by trying to identify what causes broken homes, how does broken home affects the academic performance of affected youths and finally how does broken home affects nation building (Harlow, 2008).
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Many Nigerians suffer the grips of broken home in one way or the other and the term broken home differs from one society to another depending on size, nature and economic activities of the environment. For example, what can be seen as broken home in the urban centers cannot be perceived as broken home in the rural areas or communities.
He further stated that problems also vary from one country to another. For instance, what can be seen as broken home in the United states of America may not be seen as broken home in some African countries. Therefore, it is perceived different environment depending on the its nature and causes.
Since the family is the smallest unit of the society and an agent of socialization, it therefore , means that if the family is bad the nation would be bad as well. It is on this basis that the researcher wants to conduct a research on the effects of broken home on academic performance of the affected youths,
In Nigeria society today, it has been observed with great concern that the problems of broken homes have caused much harm to the youths in particular and the society in general.
An overwhelming number of poor and minority students are victim of separated parent trying to meet up with the struggle of life. These set of students are confronted with many problems such as lack of parental care, domestic violence, teenage pregnancy etc.
In our society, children are sometimes exposed at an early age to all sort of dangers arising from malnutrition, diseases and various temptation of surviving due to absence of one or both their parents. Student’s life in broken homes is observed to be associated with emotional stress that can impair intellectual development, thereby giving way for such children to grow up without being trained properly.
It is on this basis that the researchers want to critically examine the effect of broken home on academic performance of the secondary school students with particular emphasis on Kaduna South Local Government Area of Kaduna State.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
Broken home is one of the factors that can affect the academic achievement of a student at schools. The home is the bedrock of the student’s socialization processes. A child starts to learn about life as soon as he/she comes into this world. As a social animal the child does not learn in a vacuum but rather he actively learn in a society of human beings who influence his progress. Such society embodies the home, which the family belongs and the school.
1.4 Research Questions
The following research questions are going to be investigated by the researcher during the course of this work. These include:
1. What are the causes of broken homes on the academic performance of students in secondary schools?
2. What are the effects of broken homes on the academic performance of students in secondary schools?
3. What strategies could be adopted to minimize the broken homes on the academic performance of students in secondary schools?
1.5 Significance of the Study
The family all over the world is known to be a love unit of the larger society. Having known the effects of broken homes on the school learning of programme in schools, the teacher will be more informed of the consequences of broken homes on the school performance of the student. Also, from the findings of the study the teacher will be in a better position to appreciate the behavior children from broken homes and see them as unique individuals and teach them accordingly.
At the end of the survey and analysis of the data collected, necessary recommendations would be made to appropriate government as to the area of assistance to parents and children from such homes so that in future they will be able to benefit from school learning.
1.6 Scope of the Study
The scope of this study or research to solve the problem by closely examining the causes of broken homes and its effect on the academic performance of students in some selected secondary schools. The educational level of focus is students. It is believed that this group of students have been exposed to the effects of broken homes
1.7 Limitation of the Study
This study is limited to three secondary schools in Kaduna South Local Government Area of Kaduna State as a result of the following:
Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researchers in searching for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
Time constraint: the researchers simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
1.8 Definition of Terms
Family: the word family is used in this study to means a group of people formed of parents and children and is living in one house.
Broken home: the term broken home as used here is a home in which there is separation or divorce between the couple, children who lost one of their parents.
Learning: learning is used to mean the behavioural change in the child, which is brought about by experiences and usually by an external agent to the child.
Environment: this refers to all physical, social and cultural influence in the development of the child and which can be favourable or unfavourable.
Development: The tem development as used in this work means the physical and mental growth of the child.
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