1.1 Background to the Study
Parent involvement is a salient predictor of students’ success (Million, 2003). In fact, many researchers suggest that parent involvement positively impacts students’ achievement, attendance, attitudes, behavior, graduation, and life goals (Burke, 2001 and Belenardo, 2001). There is also much evidence that these benefits cross lines of family income and parent education level. In an era characterized by tremendous emphasis on school accountability as measured by students’ performance, education reform measures are replete with components that address parent involvement (Belenardo, 2001).
The parent-teacher association (PTA) has been rigorously advocated in Nigeria in recent years, which aims at the promotion of parent involvement to enhance the educational outcomes of students. The number of PTAs has been increasing drastically. Parents Teachers Association can be identified as very important variable that have potential for promoting directly or indirectly student academic achievements (Olatoye and Ogunkola, 2008).
Looking at the quality of products that Nigeria’s secondary schools turn out, it appears the quality of education received by the students is low in terms of cognitive, affective and psychomotor development there-by making the secondary school system ineffective. Omoregie (2006) lamented that the secondary education which is the pivot of the entire educational system in Nigeria is fast loosing relevance, as it is not fulfilling the national objectives as set down in the National policy of education.
The academic performance of secondary school students could be attributed to several factors but this study is restricted to the role of parents teachers’ association as a potential factor . It has been noticed in some areas, that school principals do not involve the parents in the administration of the schools for fear of being criticized. It appears in some cases, parents are no longer allowed to participate in school programmes and parents are no longer allowed to visit their children in school regularly to see how they fare. There are instances where some principals no longer make use of the Parents Teachers Association (PTA) in school administration. All these tend to make the parents handicapped in assisting the school in the provision of qualitative education to its students.
According to Cotton and Wikelund (2001), many benefits are accrued for the school and for parents themselves when parents become involved in their children’s school activities. They maintained that, school personnel benefit from the improved rapport that generally accompanies increased parents’ involvement.
This rapport is often expressed in parents’ increased willingness to support school with their labour and resources during fund-raising activities or special projects. Besides, Henderson (1987), Hicks and Sammons (1992) and Hillman and Mortimore (1995) had showed in their various studies that parental presence in the school activities and participation in committees’ events and other activities all had positive effects on achievement.
Adewuyi (2002) also submitted that active parent involvement and positive home-school-community relations have been shown to positively influence effective schooling and students’ achievement. Ajayi (1999) also posited that, effective administration of schools could be hampered where the PTA is not performing its roles as expected. Also, Ajayi (2007) posited that, the school and the community are interdependent and interrelated and for the relationship between them to be meaningful, worthwhile and productive, they must be willing to assist each other to achieve their respective goals in atmosphere of love, mutual trust and cooperation.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
As educators struggle to identify and maximize the use of every resource to improve students’ performance, it is increasingly important that they establish and maintain high levels of parent involvement in their schools. Although parent involvement at the elementary-school level has been studied extensively, more research is needed “to determine why there is a decrease of involvement as the child advances to higher grades” (Smith, 2001, p. 149). The purpose of this study was to develop a better understanding of the factors that significantly affect the level of parent involvement during the middle-school years.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The purposes of this study are:
- To reveal parents’ and teachers’ perceptions towards the PTA in achieving its goals,
- To examine the impact of parent involvement in the academic performance of students in the secondary school
- To explore factors that have been perceived to promote or inhibit the parents’ involvement in the academic process of students in secondary school
- To investigate the extent of parents’ involvement in school administration and its effect on the development of secondary school students.
1.4 Research Questions
- Are there any difference between the perceptions of parents and teachers in terms of the involvement of PTA in achieving school goals?
- To what extent does parent involvement in the academic process affect their performance in secondary school?
- What factors have been perceived to promote or inhibit parents’ involvement in the academic progress of students in secondary school?
- To what extent does parents’ involvement in school administration effect the development of secondary school students?
1.5 Research Hypothesis
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1.6 Significance of the Study
It is hoped that this study will provide information for parents, educators and school administrators to reflect upon various factors that help Parents Teachers Association in achieving its school goals. In so doing, they can investigate the possibility of introducing those factors to their own PTAs, which may consequently lead to enhancing students’ educational outcomes in school.
In addition, the fact that this study is conducted in public schools, it shares quite a lot of similarities with many other counterparts. In this connection, this study provides a valuable reference for other schools to reflect upon the rationales and goals set by their own PTAs.
1.7 Scope of the Study
This research work focuses on the role of Parents Teachers Association in the development of secondary school students in some selected schools in Agege Local Government Area Of Lagos State. This research work covers all public secondary schools students in Agege Local Government Area Of Lagos State. However, four public secondary schools will be used as case study.
1.8 Limitation of the Study
Apart from time-frame and shortage of finance, the major limitation to this research is the inability of the researcher to cover the whole public secondary school in Agege Local Government Area Of Lagos State as the title suggest.
1.9 Definition of Terms
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