Influence of Alcohol Abuse on Parental Participation in Pre-School Children’s Learning in Hilton Slum, Kaptembwa, Nakuru County, Kenya
Jajualoh, Margaret Adhiambo
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Research worldwide shows that the prevalence of alcohol abuse is on the increase and it has both genetic, and environmental causes with grave consequences for learning of children who live with parents where the problem exists. The purpose of this study was therefore to determine the influence of parental alcohol abuse on their level of participation in children‟s learning achievement in pre-schools within Hilton slum, in Kaptembwa Location, Nakuru County, Kenya. The objectives that directed the study were: to find out the influence of parents‟ alcoholism on their participation in payment of fees, provision of pre-school children‟s learning needs, enforcing pre-school children‟s class attendance as well as learning and to suggest measures that could be put in place to mitigate the problem. The study was guided by Epstein‟s (2001) Model of School, Family and Community Involvement. The underlying assumption was that parents exessive use of alcohol, which affects their pre-school children‟s performance could be linked to interactions with social environment. The study adopted a descriptive research design using the correlation method. The target population was all the 14 pre-schools in Hilton slum, Kaptembwa, Nakuru County. Their head teachers and 48 teachers. A sample size of 8 (55%) out of the 14 targeted pre-schools, their head teachers and 24 (50%) pre-school teachers (three from each school) were selected. To obtain the required data, the study used a questionnaire for teachers and interview schedule for head teachers. A pilot study was conducted in four pre-schools to test the validity and reliability of the research instruments. Data analysis involved quantitative and qualitative analysis techniques because both approaches complement each other. The study findings revealed that parents‟ alcoholism has some influence on their participation in pre-school children‟s learning, leading to reduced enrolment of pupils and in some cases a failure to attend school entirely. Further, parental alcoholism was found to be a great challenge to the society and mostly to young children who seriously needed parental guidance in their early years in school, particularly because mitigating factors that could alleviate the problem as seen in other studies were not available in this location. Thus the study recommends more measures to be put in place such as setting up of rehabilitation centres and creating awareness to the community on the effects of alcoholism to affected parents and society at large.