Choji, Joseph Davou. Factors that contribute to academic success for students from low socio-economic backgrounds: A comparative study of two selected schools; one in Saskatoon, Canada, and the other in Barkin-Ladi (Gwol), Nigeria. (2013)
Abstract: My thesis research addresses the factors that contribute to students' academic performance with special reference to children that come from low socio-economic backgrounds. It is a comparative study of two schools: one in Saskatoon, Canada, and the other in Barkin-Ladi, Nigeria. As a child who came from a low socio-economic background, and later as an adult who worked in a school with many students from low socio-economic backgrounds, I wanted to write on this topic. The sampled schools in Saskatoon and Barkin-Ladi were purposively chosen as those that have a considerable number of children from low socio-economic backgrounds. The basic question I tried to answer in my study is how students who come from low socio-economic backgrounds can best be helped to achieve academically.
In my study, I have learned that the insightful and helpful steps on helping students in the sampled school in Saskatoon are the early focus on literacy, responding to data-driven record keeping, the online survey on What Did You Learn In School Today(WDYLIST), the Child Hunger Education Program (CHEP), and the Safety, Teamwork, Attitude, Responsibility, and Respect (STARR) program. In my research findings with the sampled school in Barkin-Ladi, Nigeria, scouting for financial sponsorship, subsidizing school fees, providing educational learning materials, and organizing competitions, debates, and quizzes are essential for helping students from impoverished backgrounds excel in academics.
I discovered in my study that for participants in the sampled school in Saskatoon, Canada, teaching is viewed primarily as a vocation rather than only as a profession. Teacher perception of the profession is important in regards to being dedicated to meeting the needs of students. The study has also showed that there is a strong sense of community and unity of purpose in both sampled schools.
In the sampled school in Barkin-Ladi, Nigeria, the school being a Catholic mission helped makes a big difference in the moral upbringing of the students. As well, the examination promotion policy kept the students alert and working hard so as not to be retained or repeated in the same class. The poverty level in Nigeria cannot be compared to that of Canada. The poverty in Nigeria is so visible that there can be no mistake about who is poor and who is rich even when looking at the schools that the children attend. I have gathered from my study and my life in Nigeria that the government has a good national policy on Education but poor implementation. The sourcing for sponsorship is a big need for children from poor families to be engaged in school. Implementing the Child Hunger and Education Program (CHEP) and Safety, Teamwork, Attitude, Responsibility, and Respect (STARR) programs in the schools in Nigeria will assist students coming from low socio-economic backgrounds.