THE EFFECTS OF POVERTY ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF STUDENTS IN GUSHEGU MIDWIFEY
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Over the past decades, the unfortunate reality is that the income gap has widened between Northern Ghanan families. Educational outcomes are one of the key areas influenced by family income. Children from low-income families oen
start school already behind their peers who come from more aluent families. The incidence, depth, duration and timing of poverty all influence a child’s educational performance, along with community characteristics and social networks (Evan, 2004). However, both Northern Ghanan and international organization shave shown that the effects of poverty can be reduced using sustainable interventions. Meanwhile, poverty remains a stubborn fact of life even in rich countries. According toHarris (2006) complex web of social relationships student experience with peers, adults in the school and family members exerts a much greater influence on their academic performance. This process starts with student core
relationship with parents or primary caregivers in their lives, which form a personality that is either secure and attached or insecure and unattached. Securely attached children perform better in school (Bali, Granger, Kivlighan, Mills-Koonce, Willong by& Greeberg, 2008). Once students are in school, the dual factors of socialization and social status contribute significantly to academic achievement. The school socialization process typically pressure student to be like their peer or risk social rejection, whereas the quest for high social status drives students to attempt to differentiate themselves in some areas, for example, socio-economic status forms a huge part in this equation. Children raised in poverty rarely choose to behave differently, but are faced daily with overwhelming challenges that aluent children never have to confront and their brains have adapted to suboptimal conditions in ways that undermine good school performance. The human conditions which we might classify as being in poverty have a long history with a variety of interpretations; these conditions are influenced by a number of factors including resources, contemporary standards and public perceptions of what is minimally acceptable (Evans, 2004). One of the social issue facing students of poverty is emotional trauma. The emotional climate can oen be very stressful and emotionally depriving. The lack of emotional nurturing can lead to feelings of alienation, inadequacy, depression and anxiety. Aggressive or impulsive behaviour and social withdrawal can
also result, which in turn can affect their academic performance. However, the overall goal of this study is to provide an insight into the influence of poverty on student academic performance.
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