Poverty and academic performance of learners in rural areas of Mafikeng : with special references to Magogoe Village
Mpete, Mmamorake Faith
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This research report examines poverty as a socio-economic factor that may hamper the academic performance of learners in rural areas of Mafikeng (Magogoe). The research was conducted in Magogoe village of Mafikeng. The researcher is a professional Middle school educator, who in her experience as an educator realised that there are learners who do not achieve academically because of their social background. A descriptive 'study was undertaken to research on poverty and academic performance of learners in rural areas of Mafikeng. Middle school learners are in a transition stage, which according to Erikson (Louw, 1991) is adolescent stage. They seek positive identity and according to Freud (Louw, 1991) they are in genital stage in which they form relationships with opposite sex persons. During this time of their lives, they need more energy that is provided· by healthy nutrition, as their physical being also grows at a faster rate. Those that experience hardships are, because of poverty, greatly affected and eventually become prone to health and social pathologies. Factors such as accommodation, income, mode of transport to school, source of energy and parental involvement in children's schoolwork were explored to verify the effects of poverty on academic performance. The sample of the research consisted of 60 participants whom are all learners from three different middle schools in Magogoe village. Data was obtained through questionnaires, which were self administered by the researcher to the participants. From the literature and empirical findings, it became evident that poverty does affect scholastic performance of learners. The researcher's recommendations are that, permaculture and feeding schemes be introduced in rural schools. The Department of Transport assist learners who walk long distances to schools by providing the learners with bicycles and or school buses. Government improve infrastructures in schools and the Department of Education implement structured study periods after school where the educators can supervise the learners. Learners be provided with Life Skills education which will help them understand their situation and learn to cope in their family circumstances.
- Humanities