The Effect of Child Abuse on Academic Performance of Students in Mathematics
- Background of the Study
Child abuse has remained a global issue in most countries including Nigeria. It is an age long-long human problem. The united nations Convention (1990) defines a child as a person under the age of 18 years.
Childhood maltreatment and aversive parenting practices in general have the potential to delay the academic progress of students (William, 2012). However, the education process is an instrument of social, mental, and economic development through which the right values and attitudes for proper development are inculcated. Child abuse and its consequences are the unjust treatment given to a child that disturbs his development process (Richard, 2015).
According to Akan (2018), in some families, many parents because of many social, political, and economic activities tend to neglect their children. In schools, such children are not given the basic motivation and encouragement necessary for the development of a positive attitude toward effective learning. Teachers in schools, who are expected to play a significant role in the educational life of their learners, more often than not tend to exhibit a total lack of interest in their students while some even ridicule and subject them to various forms of maltreatment. The abused students then exhibit recalcitrant and unruly behaviours which consequently deteriorate their academic performance (Ludan, 2016).
Akpan (2016) said that most child abuse occurs in a child’s home, with a smaller amount occurring in the organization, schools, or communities. The child interacts with. It is a practice whereby children are battered, and deprived of some basic needs a home and at school. The authors further opined that “the child of today’s child will determine the quality of tomorrow’s man.
Child abuse has emerged as one of the serious problems that need the attention of the public. All over the world, there are children working like slaves, they begin their streets, toil under the sun in the field and plantations, serve as housemaids, and work day and night in shops and factories. Millions of children lose their lives; some are denied the joy of childhood due to the type of abuse they experience at an early age (Amadi, 2014).
Accordingly, Okon and Ekere (2018), maintained that the child is a valuable gift from God and should be cared for. Throughout history, children were considered property.
Parents had the understanding that they have unrestricted authority to do to a child whatever they deemed necessary, child abuse in some homes, the parent-child relationship is a source of distress and trauma which results in parents maltreating their child physically, sexually, psychologically, and neglect by failure to provide him with love, care, attention and other needs. Amadi (2014) emphasized that childhood is expected to be the best time to lay a foundation of balance between social and emotional stability for an expected adult. It is during childhood that the ingredients on which the child show growth is expected to be put in place.
The Effect of Child Abuse on Academic Performance of Students in Mathematics
Child abuse has been recognized as a violation of the rights of the child through the adoption of the convention on the rights of the child by many countries including Nigeria. This convention recognizes the significance of liberty, quality, and nurturance as essential for the preservation of children’s integrity as individuals. Despite all these, there are still incidences of the problem of child abuse in Nigeria.
Children abound on the streets hawking their wares, pushing wheelbarrows and trucks when they should be in school laying a solid foundation for their future. Some abused children that managed to be in school do not fully devote their time to their studies. Some abused children constitute a serious hazard to society. For instance, abused children have been linked to violent crimes, stealing prostitution, and other undesirable behaviours. With such stated crimes that are inimical to peaceful societies, it becomes imperative that urgent steps must be taken to address the issue of child abuse and neglect in our society.
- Statement of the Problem
This study is examined by the researcher’s encounter with dismay at the multitude of school-age children roaming the streets and traffic ways during school hours. They hawk goods, wash cars, beg for money, etc. These activities are deprivation of the children the right to education. Apart from that, some are sent to hawk on daily basis and warned not to return with their unsold goods. If the child doesn’t finish selling for that day there will be no food for him or her. Girls then turn to promiscuity and boys will turn to steal in order to make up the money for their masters and mistress.
It is obvious to see the maltreatment meted out to the children from broken homes and parental neglect.
It is obvious as one hears over the media on daily basis several forms of child abuse ranging from rape, kidnapping, child trafficking, and child battering. Some of them do not have adequate care in terms of providing them with basic needs some are driven into prostitution through street hawking, exposed to danger and harm to hawking, and some meet their death in a running car when crossing the road in the process of hawking.
In school, one observes students who are affected by anxiety, depression, and some aggressive destructive, and inappropriate acts or delinquent behaviours. Some students are observed to be truant, not coming to school regularly, and sleeping during lessons while some seek inappropriate affection from others. It is on light of these, that the study attempts to unravel the causes of child abuse and how it influence the academic performance of the child.
- Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study is to examine the influence of child abuse on the academic performance of students in mathematics in secondary schools in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area.
- Examiner the effect of physical child abuse on the academic performance of students in mathematics in secondary school in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area.
- Examine the effect of emotional child abuse on the academic performance of students in mathematics in secondary schools in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area.
- Research Questions
In order to guide the study, a research question was formulated thus:
- How does physical child abuse affect the academic performance of students in mathematics in secondary schools in Mkapt Enin Local Government Area?
- To what extent does emotional child abuse affects the academic performance of students in mathematics in secondary schools in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area?
- Statement of Hypothesis
These hypotheses were formulated to guide the study:
- There is no significant effect of physical child abuse on the academic performance of students in mathematics in secondary schools in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area.
- There is no significant effect of emotional child abuse on the academic performance of students in mathematics in secondary schools in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area.
- Significance of the Study
This study will provide parents and school administrators with an insight into how much damage child abuse and especially hawking after before and after school can have on the academic development of students in general.
This study is significant as the findings will be beneficial to parents, guidance, teachers, school heads, and all other stakeholders in the educational sector as they will be better enlighted on the problem associated with child abuse. Such knowledge may curtail any further action of exploiting the child, especially being used as an object of raising the family economy.
Hawking no doubt exposes the child to many social vices this the fact that the study attempts to create a model for proper upbringing of the child in society makes it justifiable.
- Limitations of the Study
The factors that limited the scope of this study were the time frame for the study, financial constraints, and the researcher’s academic work.