Exploring child headed families : a case study on scholastic experience of learners in a secondary school.
Nxumalo, Thandazile Angel.
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The purpose of this study was to explore scholastic experiences of learners who are from child headed families. The research questions in this study were: What are the experiences of children who come from child headed homes? And why do children who come from child headed homes have these particular experiences? The study was informed by interpretivist paradigm that attempted to understand how the learners from child headed families cope in the school environment. The learners who are affected by being children form child headed households were sources of data for the study. Data was collected from various school records, such as schedules for class results and attendance records from class registers to ascertain the impact of challenges for these learners. The data from the interviews were analysed thematically. It can be said that the scholastic experience of children from child headed households is varied. The study has shown that while some experience difficulty in coping with scholastic activities and home life, others have displayed resilience, and have coped quite admirably. This goes without saying that a child is a child irrespective as to what kind of background she/he comes from. . Every child is unique. However, this study has raised quite a significant number of issues pertaining to how children from child headed households are able to cope with their situation so that it has a minimal effect on the scholastic experience of these learners. A lot still has to be done in order to empower the children from child headed households in South Africa. The results of this study are not exhaustive but may just be the tip of the ice-berg on the plight of children from child headed households in their scholastic experience. Therefore, there is a need for more in depth studies on the topical issue One of the possible implications of this study is that children from child headed homes need intervention from various government and non-government institutions so that they can have a better scholastic experience with a possibility of more stable future.