Factors Affecting dropout Review of Related Literature

7 July 2016

Improving students’ relationships with teachers has important, positive and long-lasting implications for students’ academic and social development. Solely improving students’ relationships with their teachers will not produce gains in achievement. However, those students who have close, positive and supportive relationships with their teachers will attain higher levels of achievement than those students with more conflictual relationships.

If a student feels a personal connection to a teacher, experiences frequent communication with a teacher, and receives more guidance and praise than criticism from the teacher, then the student is likely to become more trustful of that teacher, show more engagement in the academic content presented, display better classroom behavior, and achieve at higher levels academically.

Positive teacher-student relationships draw students into the process of learning and promote their desire to learn. (Kaufman, 2013). Teachers who foster positive relationships with their students create classroom environments more conducive to learning and meet students’ developmental, emotional and academic needs.

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Here are some concrete examples of closeness between a teacher and a student: 1) A seven-year-old girl who is experiencing divorce at home goes to her former first grade teacher in the mornings for a hug of encouragement, even though she is now in the second grade; 2) A fourth grade boy who is struggling in math shows comfort in admitting to his teacher that he needs help with multiplying and dividing fractions; 3) A middle school girl experiences bullying from other students and approaches her social studies teacher to discuss it because she trusts that the teacher will listen and help without making her feel socially inept (Kaufman, 2013).

Higher student dropout rates have been associated with the attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors of teachers and other school staff toward students. Schools with higher dropout rates report that students perceive school staff as uncaring, not interested in students as individuals, and not helpful. For primarily, a teacher’s job is to nurture and guide a student to succeed similar to what a parental figure might do (Hardre and Reeve 2003:353). When a student is not engaged in class work because they feel like their teacher is not helping them they begin to get aggravated.

If a student is upset then they will think negatively about how well they are doing in school and how well they will be able to do in the future. “Hence, much can be gained in both theory and practice by thinking about dropout as not only an achievement issue but also a motivational issue”(Hardre and Reeve 2003:354). Academic Performance Students with poor academic achievement (poor grades, history of course failure) and a history of retention (repeating one or more grades) are more likely to drop out.

Students with low academic engagement (time on task, credit accrual) are also at higher risk for dropping out ( Lan, W. & Lanthier, R. ,2003). Students, who have negative attitudes toward school, consider schoolwork irrelevant, do not like school, and do not feel they fit in. These are critical indicators for dropping out (Lan & Lanthier, 2003). Foreign Literature Financial Resources The direct and indirect costs of schooling can exclude some children from school. One of the most important direct costs underlying the process of drop out is school fees where these are levied.

Thus school fees were found to be a potent reason for drop out of 27 percent of boys and 30 percent of girls before matriculation in South Africa (Hunter and May, 2002). Many countries have now adopted fee free for the basic education cycle because of the effects on participation. Some have also introduced capitation systems to offset the loss in school income. But other charges and indirect costs continue to be an obstacle to enrolment of the poorest households (Lewin, 2008).

Thus the costs of pens/pencils, copybooks, private coaching, transportation, and school uniform remain a relative economic burden for poor households (Ananga, 2011 forthcoming). Lack of money to buy essential school materials for children’s schooling is likely to cause lack of enrolment in the first place and potentially high dropout at a later stage (Kadzamira and Rose, 2003). This is the case in Kenya, where dropout rates among the children of economically vulnerable families have gone up due to lack of resources to pay for the costs of education for their children that are not covered by the fee free educational policy (Mukudi, 2004).

The ‘cost-sharing’ policy of Kenya compelled parents to pay about 65 percent of school costs, which caused many poor children to drop out (Ackers, Migoli and Nzomo, 2001). The opportunity cost of schooling is the income forgone of the next best activity available for children who are in education. These activities relate to child labour or caring responsibilities both within and outside of the household (see Section 2. 2 above). The opportunity cost for children who are in schooling often increases as they get older, which increases the pressure on them to withdraw from school (Colclough, Rose and Tembon, 2000).

In Bangalore, India, for example, if the wage earnings of parents are low children may be called to supplement household income either by working or by taking on other household responsibilities to free up other household members for work (Chugh, 2004). This is likely to increase the risk that children drop out from education Family Context In particular the relationship of the child with other members of the household and the child’s responsibilities may be important determinants of school dropout (Rose and Al-Samarrai, 2001; Khanam, 2008).

In many poor countries children combine school with work (at home or away from home) in order to satisfy household needs (Admassie, 2003). Classroom setting and academic performance Students in well-ventilated classrooms perform significantly better on standardized tests than their peers who receive inadequate fresh air, according to newly published research conducted by The University of Tulsa’s Indoor Air Program. “Far too many schools fall short of providing a healthy learning environment for children.

By doing something as simple as introducing more fresh air into the classroom, schools potentially could help every student perform at a higher level,” said Richard Shaughnessy, program director of Indoor Air Quality Research at TU and a research associate in the Department of Chemical Engineering. The study suggests that increasing classroom ventilation rates toward recommended guidelines translates into improved academic achievement. Reaching the recommended guidelines and pursuing better understanding of the underlying relationships would support sustainable and productive school environments for students and personnel.

Eric Hanushek, an economist at the University of Rochester, has published numerous articles in which he finds that few “school inputs”—student-teacher ratios, spending per student, teacher education, teacher experience, and teacher pay—ultimately have an effect on student performance as measured by test scores. His conclusions are reached after a statistical analysis of data from numerous studies by various researchers, and is well-respected due to the breadth of his coverage.

However, it is important to note that Hanushek does not believe that school inputs never produce an effect in the classroom, just that there is no reason to expect consistent improved student performance by tweaking school inputs. This conclusion, of course, has been disputed by other researchers. David Card and Alan Krueger sought to qualify Hanushek’s conclusions, accepting the broad premise (“class size reduction does not independently work to increase student achievement across the board”) but refuting its application to all cases. Card and Krueger maintain that there are significant advantages to be realized by maintaining small (

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