A STUDY ON THE IMPACT OF CHILD LABOUR ON SCHOOL ATTENDANCE AND ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title page i
Table of Contents v
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
Background of the Study 1
Statement of Problem 9
Research Questions 11
Purpose of Study 12
Significance of Study 13
Scope and Delimitation of the Study 13
Definition of Terms 14
CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW
Child Labour 15
Child Right Acts 24
Family Background 30
School Attendance 36
Academic Performance 45
CHAPTER THREE: METHODOLOGY
Research Design 53
Sampling Techniques 54
Method of Data
CHAPTER FOUR: DATA
PRESENTATION AND DISCUSSION OF RESULTS
Hypothesis 1 57
Hypothesis 2 58
Hypothesis 3 59
Hypothesis 4 60
Hypothesis 5 60
CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY OF FINDINGS,
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Background of the Study
In Nigeria, the main instrument for
social change is western education.
Education is the surest and greatest investment which a nation can
depend on for the rapid development of its economic and human resources. Education is a long term measure and must be
pursued when the nation is in dire need of immediate restoration of balanced
economy. Nigeria like other nations of the
world wants people who should contribute to the development of the nation
through education. Such education should
be structured to produce knowledge and skills to pursue cultural values and
UNICEF (2006) reported that a huge 15
million children under the age of 14 are engaged in one form of labour or the
other in Nigeria. Majority of these children are exposed to long
hours of work under very dangerous and unhealthy environment.
Children employed in public places and
markets as street beggars and shoe shiners, car washers and watchers,
scavengers and feet washers in part of the country. In Northern Nigeria, children that survive on
street begging are called “almajirai”.
The rise in the state of child labour in the country could have been a
consequence of the demand for cheap labour and poverty.
Children have always worked in Nigeria. The philosophy of most culture in Nigeria
encourages children to work with their families the learning skills they would
need as adults. But today, children are
forced to work for their own and their family’s survival. The money earned by a child’s family members
has become a significant part of poor families’ income. Child labour could lead to mass drop-out from
primary and secondary schools; involvement in crimes and drug related habits;
hamper human capital development and the potentials of developing countries
like Nigeria. There is a wide-spread
belief that early employment is destructive to children’s intellectual and
physical development especially that of young children.
International Labour Organization
(ILO) estimates in 1999 indicated that 24.2 percent of children in Nigeria between
the ages of 10 and 14 years work. The
latter situation could be responsible for the increasing rate of child
trafficking in Nigeria. Nigeria is a major source,
destination and transit for trafficking of children. Key source and destination countries of
trafficking children from and to Nigeria
include Cameroun, Gabon, Benin,
Equatorial Guinea and Togo. Nigeria
has been credited to have the highest number of children and women traffickers
Child labour could affect both the
ability to attend school and to benefit from schooling; hence it is a big
challenge to the attainment of the goals of Education For All (EFA). When children are employed in one form of
labour or the other, they tend to drop out of schools.
Child domestic labour in third-party
households represents a major barrier to access and completion of quality basic
education in Nigeria.
UNICEF (2006) reported that mostly
working children neither have time, money, nor the energy to go to school. There are about 6 million working children in
which is equally divided between boys and girls. Working children either do not attend school
or skip classes because about 1 million children are forced to drop out of
school due to poverty. Over 8 million
children combine schooling and work.
These groups of children work in their spare time to pay education fees,
in this process they often skip classes due to demand in their work
places. Missing out on education makes
it impossible to break the cycle of poverty and exploitation and prevents
children from having a better life and a safer future.
There is dearth of data on primary
attendance rates in Nigeria. Though, a school enrolment rate is a sign of
the level of commitment to education. In
however, they do not always reflect a child’s participation in school.
1976, the Universal Primary Education (UPE) was introduced throughout the
country. It should be noted however,
that only tuition was free while parents and guardians were responsible for the
provision of books, uniform, seats, transport and others. For the parents who could not provide such
basic requirements, their children and wards were forced into child labour
because the requirements were more financially involved than the tuition fees.
the Universal Basic Education (UBE) was introduced in 1999, the latter policy
made the first nine years of schooling free and compulsory for all Nigerian
children of school age. UBE is backed up
by law which also stipulates free compulsory and universal education when it is
practical. The aim of the plan is to
improve the relevance, efficiency and quality of schools and to create
programmes to address the basic needs of normadic and out of school children,
youth and adult and vulnerable children generally.
Economic depression which also let to
economic and educational problems, unemployment, mass retrenchment which gave
rise to parents, inability to cater for the children basic and educational
needs made the children to engage in economic activities (child labour) at the
expense of schooling.
Learning environments in schools are
inhibitive and hostile to learning. They
are dehumanizing because of neglect at all levels with inadequate learning
facilities such as chairs, tables, desks, shortage of classrooms. All these may be affecting the attitudes of
children and parents towards learning, such that if the government lacks the
financial resources to take care of them, the parents too are affected so they
engage the children in economic activities.
Child labour has continued to pose a
significant problem in several parts of the world. The Labour Act of 1974 prohibits the
employment of children under the age of 15 in commerce and industry and
restricts labour performance by children to home-based agricultural or domestic
Child labour has both micro
consequences for the child and her family, the macro consequences for the
nation and wider international community.
Lack of skilled workforce may lead to a state of perpetual backward and
under-development. The lack of human
capital formation condemns a child to a generational cycle of child labour.
The literature is near unanimous on
the positive role that rising adult education level can play in reducing the
child labour and enhancing child’s schooling.
This points to the need to devise comprehensive strategies that promote
adult education at all levels and social awareness and increase the enrolment
rates of their children.
Not all types of labour are harmful to
children if associated with a learning environment in the home. It can provide training and discipline for
the labour market in adulthood.
Nevertheless, the type of labour in which children are involved can
impose substantial harm to their physical and mental health.
The heavy manual labour of
agricultural activities could place physical and emotional strain on the child
worker. In urban areas, children may be
engaged in street vending, garbage collection and illegal occupation such as
selling drugs and prostitution.
Child labour also has an adverse
impact on education and future earning.
Government and non-governmental organization (NGOs) have tried a variety
of laws and interventions to reduce child labour. Some countries have enacted laws prohibiting
firms in their countries from employing children under the age of fifteen
(15). Organizations such as
International Labour Organization (ILO), World Trade Organization (WTO) and
United Nations Children Education Fund (UNICEF) have established conventions
and encouraged nations to ratify them.
The most powerful and controversial super national institution to curb
child labour is the imposition of international labour standards but the world
has been slow to adopt them.
Some countries have considered
legislation and actions to curb child labour in developing countries: beyond
home legislation, the major instrument for eradicating child labour is
compulsory education. Policy makers and
multilateral institutions are praising the achievements of programmes of
conditional income transfer in reducing child labour and increasing the access
of children to education. This study
seeks to examine the impact of child labour on school attendance and academic
Statement of Problem
‘Education for All’ movement is a
global charge to provide quality basic education for all children, youths and
adults. The global commitment of
education for all emerged as a reaction to the increasing phenomenon of child
labour, child trafficking, child exploitation and child related abuses that
tend to deprive children of basic education and unassured future child labour
is a major challenge in the educational sector in Nigeria.
A well organized educational system is
a product of a certain factor in which educational production exceed human
requirement. This is where adequate
provision for job opportunities and others are catered for by the
government. Under this experience, child
labour may probably be reduced.
The Nigerian economy has been for a
long depressed and inflation rate has also been high, standard of living has
been too low. There has been low
investment, low productivity, low income per capital, unemployment, under
employment, inter-tribal crisis which have probably led to child labour. Much of the recent concern over child labour
stems from the beliefs that it has a detrimental effect on human capital
The question that comes to the
researcher’s mind is how can these children be helped so that they can benefit
from government’s basic education policy.
Is there relationship between children’s family
background and the incidence of child labour?
Does child labour participation influence
children’s academic performance?
Does child labour participation influence
his/her participation in school attendance?
Does child labour participation influence
his/her participation in school extra curricular activities?
Do the results of the children who engage in
child labour worse than those who do not?
Ho1: There is no significant relationship between
students’ background and their engagement in child labour.
Ho2: Child labour participation will not
significantly influence children’s academic performance.
Ho3: Child labour participation will not
significantly influence school attendance.
Ho4: Child labour participation will not
significantly influence children participation in school extra-curricular
Ho5: There is no significant difference in
the result of students who engage in child labour and those who do not.
Purpose of Study
This study examined the impact of
child labour on school attendance and academic performance of students in
junior secondary school in some selected secondary schools in Edo State. The
study specifically examined the impact of child labour on:
students’ participation in the schools
classroom participation due to lateness,
tiredness and tardiness, etc.
Significance of Study
The various organizations have
continued to emphasize the need to stop child labour and abuse but the economic
situation in country has made this almost impossible.
The findings from this study will
contribute to a broader efforts most effectively targeted on the work that is
damaging to the children’s education or academic development. It is to show the extent to which child
labour affects the children’s school attendance and their academic performance.
Scope and Delimitation of the Study
This study is designed for the junior
secondary school (JSS) students in selected Local Government Areas of Edo
State. These are the children within the
ages 10-15 years who according to the International Labour Organization (ILO)
constitute the child labour age group.
It is to find out the impact of child labour on their academic
performance and school attendance.
Definition of Terms
this is when a child is used to do hard
work at the expense of his/her development and education.
Activities: these refer to the work
children do to earn money such as selling, hawking, bus conductors, form work,
working at building sites bakeries, restaurants, etc.