Background to the Study
Education is a fundamental human right, the key to sustainable development, a crucial tool for effective participation in societies and it enhances peace and stability among countries (Buchi, 2005). Posse and Melgosa (2006) identified three environments that must come into play in the educational process which include; the family, the school and the community. The researchers opined that for a successful educational process to be realized the objectives of these three environments must be harmonized.
Education according to Peter (2009) is the transmission of what is worthwhile to individual to individuals to make them knowledgeable and contributing members of the society. Education means all efforts towards the inculcation of the right attitude, habit, skills and knowledge necessary for proper adjustment of an individual in the society
Ford and Harris (2006) examined parental influences on African-American students’ school achievements. They focused on parents’ level of education, marital status and family income and found that children from high and middle socio-economic families are exposed to a better learning environment at home. This is because of provision and availability of extra learning facilities like computers, televisions, radios, different types of reading materials among others. They maintained that most students in low socioeconomic status families are not exposed to these learning facilities.
Okeke (2007) found four key variables as significant indicators of home environment that is conducive for learning in Enugu state. These variables are: Father’s and mother's education, source of light, house hold materials and the academic materials like books for school subjects in the homes. She maintained that these variables play a pivotal role in children's education.
The Government of Nigeria upholds education as a fundamental human right and recognizes that it is crucial for the attainment of self-fulfilment and National Development. The Nigeria government has made consistent efforts like Building of New classroom, providing Instructional Materials, Textbooks, Creating a conducive environment to enhance quality and equity in education to all Nigerians.
Education is undeniably important to every person. Through education, one gains knowledge and is able to enlarge his/her view of the world. Education also plays a rudimental role in our society and we cannot imagine a life without it. It is an element for civilization and does not only help to develop healthy surroundings but also generates an advance community or society. Education contributes tremendously in developing a child in the sense that it serves as mechanisms that allows a child to define and pursue his goals by participating in the society where he finds himself.
Family is a group of persons united by ties of marriage, blood or adoption constituting a single household and interacting with each other in their respective social roles. The family has been of great importance in shaping the performance of children (Buchi 2005). This is because academic performance of the children is usually as a result of motivation that children received from the people they interact with in their initial stages of life.
Bichi (2012) stated that family socio-economic status, which formed the subject of this study, includes housing condition, availability of reading materials and opportunities for intellectual development. Family factors, such as unsatisfactory housing condition may have a serious effect on educational achievement of a child. Families that are large in number, insufficient amenities, due to poor economic condition could distract the interest and attention of the learner, which may affect the whole process.
Education is a welcome addition, whereas on the other hand, children from unsatisfactory families or those lacking those materials or amenities go to school hoping to find the essential qualities lacking in their homes.
Naturally the expectation of these two categories of learners differs. The socio-economic status of the family has its own consequences to educational achievement. Inability to pay regular school fees due to unfavourable economic situation force some parents to send their children to substandard schools or even withdraw them from the school.