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Broken Family Issues and Effects

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    Problems and Its Background


    The family is the child’s first place of contact with the world. The child as a result, acquires initial education and socialization from parents and other significant persons in the family. The family lays the psychological, moral, and spiritual foundation in the overall development of the child. Structurally, family/homes are either broken or intact. A broken home in this context, is one that is not structurally intact, as a result of divorce, separation, death of one parent and illegitimacy. Psychological home conditions arise mainly from illegitimacy of children, the label of adopted child, broken home, divorce and parental deprivation. Such abnormal conditions of the home, are likely to have a detrimental effect on school performance of the child he asserts.

    Life, in a single parent family or broken home can be stressful for both the child and the parent. Such families are faced with challenges of inadequate financial resources. If adolescents from unstable homes are to be compared with those from stable homes, it would be seen that the former have more social, academic and emotional problems. The family and its structure play a great role in children’s academic performance. To some extent, there is simple evidence to show that marital instability brings about stress, tension, lack of motivation and frustration. Manifestations act negatively on a child’s academic performance. Children of unmarried parents/separated families often fail and are at risk emotionally. However, this may not be completely applicable in all instances of broken homes. Some children irrespective of home background or structure may work hard and become successful in life. The environment where a child finds himself/herself goes a long way in determining his learning ability and ultimately his academic. In this study it would make full understanding about the students’ who are members of broken family and also make full understanding on how it can affect the students’ academic performance.

    Conceptual Framework

    The framework of this research as can be seen below was affixed to the independent variable effects of broken family while their academic performance the dependent variable.

    • Independent Variable Dependent Variable
    • Effects of Broken Family Academic Performance
    • Statement of the Problem

    This study aims to determine the effects of broken family to the academic performance of the students. It specifically answers the following questions:


     What are the effects of broken family to the student’s academic performance?


     What are the characteristics of the respondents in terms of;

    • Age
    • Sex
    • Year level
    • Family background

    What is the academic performance of students who came from broken family? 3. How does being in a broken family affect the student’s academic performance?


    This statement assumed that there are effects of being a member in a broken family in the academic performance of high school students in St. Thomas More Academy.

    Scope and Delimitation

    This study seeks to know how a student from a broken family affects the student’s academic performance of St. Thomas More Academy, on this academic school year 2012 – 2013.

    The target respondents of this study are the students of St. Thomas More Academy representing the majority of the school’s population. It limits itself on the academic performance of the STMA students in school and how can it be an understanding matter to the student’s performance on their study.

    Significance of the Study

    This study about the effects of a broken family in the academic performance of St. Thomas More Academy S.Y 2012-13.The persons that would benefit from the study are the following:

    This is for them to be aware on how to deal with problem. And help fellow classmate who is also in this kind of position.


    Know how to give full understanding and guidance for a student’s needs.


    Parents and Guardians will be able to benefit on this study as to guide their children in proper guidance and behavior to their
    performance in school.

    School Administration

    The researchers sincerely hope that the administration may be able to look into activities or seminars that could boost the self – esteem of the student/s.

    Definition of Terms

    The following special terms has been used to suit this study.

    • Family – a small part of the community, a small foundation of a society.
    • Illegitimacy – an act of
    • Deprivation – act of withdrawal
    • Bond – family ties, chemistry of a family.
    • Broken family – is a term used to describe a household, usually in reference to parenting, in which the family unit does not properly function according to accepted societal norms. This household might suffer from domestic violence, a dissolved marriage, drug abuse, or anything else that interferes with the upbringing of children.
    • Adult children – a son or daughter who has reached the age of majority.
    • Detrimental effect – a damaging/negative effect.

    Review of Related Literature

    • In preparing this study the researchers earnestly searched for different books, article and other type of media reference including the internet.
    • This study was thoroughly examined.
    • Foreign studies

    Dysfunctional family is another term for broken family. It is family of which is conflicted with; misbehavior, child neglect or abuse on the part of an individual. A common misperception of dysfunctional families is the mistaken belief that the parents are on the verge of separation and divorce. While this is true in a few cases, often the marriage bond is very strong as the parents’ faults actually complement each other. In short, they have nowhere else to go.

    However, this does not necessarily mean the family’s situation is stable. Any major stressor, such as relocation, unemployment/underemployment, physical or mental illness, natural disaster, etc. can cause existing conflicts affecting the children to become much worse. Dysfunctional families have no social, financial or intellectual bounds. Nevertheless, until recent decades the concept of a dysfunctional family was not taken seriously by professionals (therapists, social workers, teachers, counselors, clergy, etc.), especially among the middle and upper classes. Any intervention would have been seen as violating the sanctity of marriage and increasing the probability of divorce, which was socially unacceptable at the time. Historically, children of dysfunctional families were expected to obey their parents (ultimately the father), and cope with the situation alone. In United States, January 16, 2006 ( – The U.S Center for Marriage and Family released a study in November 2005 that shows broken family structures consistently lead to education difficulties for children. “When it comes to educational achievement,” the study says, “children living with their own married parents do significantly better than other children.” The report found that children from non-intact families (children living in a situation other than with their own married father and mother) have significantly higher rates of difficulty with all levels of education, from pre-kindergarten through to primary, secondary, and college-age levels.

    Each year a child spends with a single mother or stepparent “reduces that child’s overall educational attainment by approximately one-half year” suggests the report. The study, a comprehensive review of recent academic research on the relationship between family structures and children’s academic performance, compared education outcomes from children growing up with their own married parents to children in non-intact family structures such as divorced, single, remarried or cohabiting parents. For teenagers, students from broken homes were 30 percent more likely to miss school, be late, or cut class than students from intact homes, in part because single parents had more difficulty monitoring their children. Teenagers from non-intact families were more likely to be sexually active and had higher rates of pregnancy. Girls from divorced single-mother homes were at greatest risk for teenage pregnancy. The study reports that a majority of U.S. children will have spent a significant part of their childhood in a one-parent home by the time they reach 18. Single parent homes in the U.S. nearly doubled in the period from 1968-2003. Often the passive parent will make excuses or try to mitigate the damage that the problem parent has created, while failing to address the harmful actions that are destroying the family. Clemens and Oelke (1967) and Emeke (1984) have attributed the cause of poor academic performance to a combination of personal and institutional factors. Personal factors relate to the individual’s intelligence, knowledge and ability.

    Reviewed literature indicated that there is an awareness of the importance of the home environment or family on student’s academic performance. The home has a great influence on the students’ psychological, emotional, social and economic state. In the view of Ajila and Olutola (2007), the state of the home affects the individual since the parents are the first socializing122 V. O. UWAIFO agents in an individual’s life. This is because the family background and context of a child affect his reaction to life situations and his level of performance. Although, the school is responsible for the experiences that make up the individual’s life during school periods, yet parents and the individual’s experiences at home play tremendous roles in building the personality of the child and making the child what he is. Thus, Ichado (1998) concluded that the environment in which the student comes from can greatly influence his performance at school. Although, the home environment or family has been recognized as having a lot of influence on the academic performance of students (Nzewuawah 1995); Ajila and Olutola 2007).

    Previous studies have been concentrated on the area of socio-economic status of arents. Other aspects of parental environment such as the structure of the family have been grossly neglected. Yet, Ichado (1998) stated that parent’s constant disagreement affects children emotionally and this could lead to poor academic performance in school. The family lays the psychosocial, moral and spiritual foundations in the overall development of the child. While the” mother’s significant role in this cannot be over-emphasized. Studies on father-child relationship suggest that the presence of a father in the home influences significantly the development of a child (Agulanna 1999). Thus, parenthood is a responsibility requiring the full cooperation of both parents who must ensure the total development of their offspring(s). Structurally, a family is either broken or intact. A broken family in this context is one that is not structurally intact for various reasons; death of a parent, divorce, separation, dissertation and illegitimacy in which case, the family was never completed (Conkline 1996). This analysis becomes necessary because life in a single parent family can be stressful for both the child and the parent. Such families are faced with the challenges of diminished financial resources (Children’s Defence Fund 1994), assumptions of new roles and responsibilities, establishment of new patterns in intra-familial interaction and reorganization of routines and schedules (Agulanna 1999). Local Studies

    The Family is an essential factor for a human’s whole-being, everything about a man, his background, attitude, all of his achievements, his honor and dignity , relies on the structure of the family a man lives in with. A family is composed of a father a mother and their offspring, bonded by their love for each other. Here in the modern age a family could be two things, complete or broken. A broken family is believed to be a cause of a child’s mislead in life, some people give it as the main reason of the rebellious and unclear acts of children. School, another factor which meld us on becoming successful, but how will it make us successful if we can’t focus, we can’t do schooling like others cause we mind the problems we encounter in our homes. Many articles and support the issue that broken families affect the child’s performance, attitude and self-esteem. They show statistics that broken families affect much of the child’s emotional and spiritual being, that it greatly distresses the child’s education. If there are other factors which counter the problems he/she faces. Some might use friends and other stuff to forget things and focus on studies. 25 respondents were randomly selected from six schools.

    Results showed a significant relationship between broken homes and academic achievement of students. It was also discovered that female students from broken homes perform better in their studies than the male students, moreover, the result showed that low socio-economic status, also had an adverse effect on the academic performance of children from broken homes. There are many things that divorce does to a family, and there are many things that is does to the child. These effects are rarely positive, or helpful depending upon the family’s prior situation. Divorce has many negative effects on the psychological, and social aspects of a child’s life. The research adds to a wealth of data that shows children suffer badly from divorce or parental break-up, and that those brought up by a single parent are more likely to do badly at school, suffer poor health, and fall into crime, addiction and poverty as adults. The report, funded by the Department of Health and published by the Office for National Statistics, investigated emotional disorders – ranked as those which cause considerable distress and interference with the way in which children perform at school and during play.

    It also looked at conduct disorders which result in aggressive, violent or anti-social behaviour. The researchers studied nearly 8,000 children aged between five and 16 in 2004 and found almost one in ten had disorders. The children were checked again last year. They were nearly three times more likely to exhibit a conduct disorder. Eleven per cent of those children whose families broke up had emotional disorders, against 3 per cent among those whose families were still together. Nearly a third of children found to have mental disorders in 2004 still suffered from them three years later. The Department of Health said: ‘The Government is committed to helping children and young people experiencing mental health problems.’ But academic Patricia Morgan, author of several studies on family break-up, said: ‘This does not come as a surprise, and things are going to get worse. ‘Broken families and serial fathers produce homes full of conflict and chaos and
    they are terrible for children.’


    1. Clemens HM, Oelke MO 1967. Factors related to reported problems of adolescents, New York,. Personnel and Guidance Journal, 45: 699-702. Ichado SM 1998. Impact of broken home on academic performance of secondary school students in English language. Journal of Research in Counseling Psychology 4(1): 84- 87. Imogie AI 2002. Counselling for quality assurance in education. A keynote address delivered on the occasion of 26th Annual Conference of CASSON, University of Benin, Benin City, August, 2002. Nzewunwah PN 1995. The Effects of Single Parenthood on the Academic Performance of Students.

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