Relationship among parenting styles, learner’s involvement in behaviour problems and academic performance in Nairobi County, Kenya
Ong’era, Lynett Kemunto
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There is abundant evidence to support the correlation between parenting styles, children‟s behaviour disorders and academic performance. However, the relationship among parenting styles, learners‟ involvement in problem behaviour and academic performance has received little attention and research interest in Kenya. The main purpose of this study was to determine the relationship among parenting styles, learners‟ involvement in problem behaviour and academic performance in Nairobi County, Kenya. This research study usedmixed method involving descriptive and correlational research designs. Quantitative datawas collected from learners using questionnaires while qualitative data was collected from parents using interviews. The population of study was drawn from three randomly selected sub-counties of Nairobi County namely: Dagoretti, Lang‟ata and Starehe.Fifteen schools were randomly selected from the three sub-counties. A total of 400 learners from regular public secondary schools and 40 parents were randomly selected for the study. This study sought to find out factors that influence parenting styles, establish the influence of parenting styles on learners‟ involvement inbehaviour problems, determine the influence of involvement in behaviour problems on learners‟ academic performance andfind out the relationship between parenting styles and learners‟ academic performance. The theoretical model by Diana Baumrind, (1966) on parenting styles formed the basis of this study. Researchinstruments were piloted prior to the study in KasaraniSub-County, Nairobi County using 13 respondents comprising of 10 learners and 3 parents.Reliability was tested using internal-consistency method. Research data was collected through questionnaires and interviews. Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software was used to analyse quantitative data.Qualitative data was organized and analysed by themes. Descriptive and inferential statistics was used to summarize and describe the sample.Findings of the study revealed that learners of authoritative parents have lowinvolvement in problem behaviour and perform better academically as compared to learners of authoritarian, permissive and neglectful parents. It also revealed that involvement in problem behaviour is negatively correlated with academic performance and learners of neglectful parents rank low in academic performance as compared to learners of parents using other parenting styles. It is recommended that parents should strive to understand their children, know their friends, engage themwith constructive activities and seek better ways of controlling what they access through media. Further, parents should purpose and dedicate quality time with their children, dialogue with them, listen to their concerns and address them effectively.