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The problem and its background

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    Introduction Students who are always late in class not only lose valuable instruction for themselves, they also disturb class, interfere with lessons in progress, and disrupt other students’ concentration. They also interrupt those busy teachers who are not able on guiding students in their remedial because they have something to do their school-works such as grades of the students, lessons, etc. Educators agree that prompt and regular school attendance is an important key to a student’s success.

    Students should be taught to demonstrate respect for staff and for peers, and one way to do this is to practice prompt and regular school attendance. In a 1999-2000 survey, student tardiness and absenteeism were reported as problems by about 30 percent of public school principals, at 32 percent and 29 percent, respectively much higher than vandalism, theft, or student possession of weapons, at 6 percent, 4 percent, and 1 percent. Punctuality is a trait parents should instil in their children.

    Not only will this be valuable during the elementary and secondary school years, but it will also serve your children well in college and beyond, when punctuality is up to them alone. Background of the Study Tardiness and absenteeism are habitually done by most of the students nowadays. In our school, any students shall be considered habitually tardy if he/she incurs tardiness, three (3) times a month during the school year, as well as he/she shall be considered habitually absent if he/she incurs unauthorized absences not exceeding the allowable three (3) days in a month without submitting an excuse letter.

    He/she is considered excuse if he/she submitted the same on time. Most of the students incur tardiness if they were not able to wake up early because they were not able to sleep on time; some were doing a lot of things at night, especially household chores. Some were having their review late but mostly keeping their selves busy wasting time in the internet, chatting with friends, and texting. There may, on occasion, be an illness or emergency that causes your child to be late or absent from school. Consequently, they will just take an absence, so every time they wake up late, they will just take another absence, and soon to be a habit.

    Sometimes student absents because they are afraid of something in school like strict teachers, they do not have something that to be pass on that day, sometimes they absent because they are tired or do not want to go to school because of nothing. Objective of the Study To find out why the students of Bacoor Unida Evangelical School engage in being tardy and absent To be aware of the common factors of being tardy and being absent. To know how often students do commit lates/absences at school. To know the things that can help the students to overcome being tardy/absentee. Conceptual Framework Statement of the Problem

    The main topic of the research is: The Common Factors Affecting the Habitual Tardiness and Absenteeism of Sophomore and Junior High School Students of Bacoor Unida Evangelical School Academic Year 2012-2013. The study aims to answer the following: 1. How often do students get late on school? 2. What correlates to excessive tardiness? 3. What are the consequences of being tardy? 4. What are the factors that can help the students to overcome tardiness? 5. How often do students commit absence at school? 6. What are the common causes of being absent? 7. What are the consequences of being absent? 8.

    What are the things that can help you to overcome absenteeism? Statement of the Hypothesis The students, particularly in high school, considered the main cause of tardiness was waking up late; on the other hand, the main cause of absenteeism was sickness, which brings a huge impact to them in terms of their learning process and academic competence. Therefore, this study was made to help the students as well as their parents and teachers address the problem in its early stage to avoid much greater problems in the future. Significance of the Study The results of the study will be of great help to the following: A. Students.

    The students would be able to go to school on time. They would become more responsible. This study will help the students to attend their class regularly since this will provide them factual information about the benefits that they can acquire in attending school. B. Parents. Parents could encourage their children to go to school on time. C. Teachers and Principals. They could help each other in implementing plans in helping the students to go to school early. D. The Researchers. Through this study, the researchers would be able to know effects of tardiness and absenteeism in Junior and Senior High school students.

    E. The Future Researchers. The proposed study will benefits and help the future researcher as their guide. The study can also open in development of this study. They would be able to use these data for them to get the ideas and references if they are planning to conduct the same study. Scope and limitations of the study The focal point of this research was to survey the perception of the selected high school students towards the common factors affecting the habitual tardiness and absenteeism. Its primary concentration is bounded only to the selected High School Students of Bacoor Unida Evangelical School S.

    Y. 2012-2013. The survey respondents consisted of eighty (80) (2nd Year and 3rd Year high school) students who experienced being tardy and absent at school. Definition of terms 1. Tardiness – delayed beyond the expected or proper time. 2. Absenteeism – marked by long duration or frequent recurrence of absent. 3. Habitual – common or usual. 4. Punctuality – the quality, state, or habit of being on time. 5. Attendance – the act or fact of attending. 6. Prompt – being ready and quick to act; being on time. 7. Policy – a definite course or method of action selected to guide and

    determine present and future decisions. 8. Consistency – firmness. 9. Frequent – to associate with, be in, or resort to habitually. 10. Learning process – a way of studying and obtaining knowledge. 11. Academic competence – capability to do with schools, learning or teaching. 12. Sickness – the state of being sick or not healthy. 13. Interfere – to interpose in a way that hinders or impedes. 14. Consequence – something produced by a cause. CHAPTER II REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE Introduction Presented in Chapter II is a synthesis of research that supports the evaluation of the attendance policy.

    Included in the chapter is a historical overview of attendance, the importance of attendance, causes or predictors of student absenteeism, descriptions of related attendance policies/ programs, and a review of perceptions and attitudes about attendance policies/programs, tardiness and absences in the school environment, home influence on school tardiness and absences and model of deviance in high school as indicated by a literature review. Historical Overview Early homesteading laws allowed the settlers free land on which to build schools.

    Schooling was perceived as the key to success for individuals and to the excellence of the society (Mitchell, 1993). Free and compulsory education came to England and Wales following the Elementary Education Acts of 1870 and 1876, although not always on a full time basis. The Education Act of 1918 finally abolished half time schooling, and made elementary education entirely free and compulsory until the end of the term after the child’s fourteenth birthday. Nevertheless, in most parts of the United States the problem of illegal absence dates from 1876 (Galloway, 1985).

    In the 1850s urban schools suffered from an extremely high turnover of students. Many students were needed at home to do many of the chores, especially if they lived on a farm. Other students worked outside of the home to help support the family. Poor attendance was a problem for teachers and parents well before school attendance became compulsory (Pallister, 1969). Pallister notes that enthusiasm for education varied with the standards of the school; good schools quickly obtaining the support of parents, and similarly bad schools, least in the eyes of parents, quickly losing support.

    School administrators were immediately faced with new concerns considering that in 1900 only 6 percent of Americans had a diploma (Wise, 1994; Kay, 1991). It is clear that attendance rates varied little between 1904 and 1938, except in 1920 when lower average attendance followed the social upheaval of the First World War. Galloway noted that there is little evidence that attendance rates over the last ten to fifteen years (1970-1985) differ very much from those earlier in the century (Galloway, 1985).

    Even with the increased attendance and the increased graduation rates over the last 100 years, education is relatively the same. A glaring example of this is the release of students for farm work in extremely industrialized society. Our culture has changed but the reasons for excused absences have not changed (Wise, 1994). School attendance was a problem before education became free and compulsory, and based on the researcher’s knowledge and experience as an educator, it has continued to be one ever since. The researcher notes that attendance figures can be interpreted in different ways.

    There is little evidence that school attendance rates have changed noticeably throughout the twentieth century. Importance of Attendance Government officials, teachers’ groups, and individual parents all have voiced their concerns over the need to develop policies and practices to counteract the problems facing our nation’s schools today such as the dropout rate, drug abuse, and declining education performance (Bernstein, 1990). Poor school attendance arouses strong feelings in teachers, parents, members of the educational support services, educational administrators, politicians, and pupils.

    These strong feelings are expressed in different and often contradictory ways, depending on the individual’s own perspective Galloway, 1985). The statistics related to school absenteeism are staggering. Each school day, 2,500,000 students are reported absent from school. The dropout rate is estimated at 27 percent nationally and over 45 percent in some cities. The 27 percent dropout rate equates to 65 bus loads of students who leave United States schools each week and do not return. In a year’s time, 700,000 students will be lost.

    In two years, the number will exceed one million (Person, 1990). The Virginia Department of Education has created a system for better and more accountable schools through what is now called the Outcome Accountability Project (OAP). This program establishes the criteria for how schools and school divisions will be held accountable for meeting the commitment of improving learning for all. The data from the OAP provides a framework for analyzing the school district by breaking the whole into some of its parts.

    The attendance data for secondary students provided by the OAP for the State of Virginia indicates that 66 percent of students in grades 9-12 during the school year ’95-’96 were absent 10 days or less from school. The OAP data further list Newport News Public Schools as having 55 percent of its grade 9-12 students absent 10 days or less from school (OAP Report, 1997). The school philosophy, in general, is one that stresses to teachers, pupils, and parents the importance of regular school attendance.

    This is because it is the beliefs that only through regular school attendance can students progress academically at a successful rate (Jett & Platt, 1979). Attendance is part of a pupil’s cumulative record. It is important that good school attendance habits be established for later years when pupils seek employment (Jett & Platt, 1979). Jett and Platt conclude that attendance and its importance should be taught to students. Basic to that philosophy is the belief that poor student attendance and truancy are some of the first signs of decay of a school and School system.

    Therefore, it is incumbent upon educators do all they can to promote good school attendance habits among their pupils. Anyone who has skipped or had to repeat a grade, has been placed in or excluded from a special program, or has been denied academic credit because of absences knows the importance of local school policies. While scholarly attention has tended to focus on federal and state education policy, those who attend and work in schools realize that their lives can be affected greatly by policy made at the school and district level (Duke and Canady, 1991).

    Guba (1984) identifies eight distinct conceptions of policy. They include the following: Policy is an assertion of intents or goals. Policy is the accumulated standing decisions of a governing body, by which it regulates, controls, promotes, services, and otherwise influences matters within its sphere of authority. Policy is guided to discretionary action. Policy is a strategy undertaken to solve or ameliorate a problem. Policy is sanctioned behavior. Policy is a norm of conduct characterized by consistency and regularity in some substantive action area.

    Policy is the output of the policy-making system. Policy is the effect of the policy-making and policy-implementing system as it is explained by the client. The researcher believes that each of the above conceptions by Guda has some value for the study of school district and school policy. Duke and Canady (1991) refer to the school policy as any official action taken at the district or school level for the purpose of encouraging or requiring consistency and regularity. They further state that the definition implies intentionality on the part of those developing policy.

    Pizzo (1983) refers to school policy as fitting into an ecology of public policies. In other words, where the operation of public schools is concerned, a range of policy sources can be identified. Pizzo further states that policies are derived from Congress, the Department of Education, the courts, state legislatures, intermediate agencies, school boards, and school-based personnel. To understand the educational policy in the United States, it is necessary to understand each of these policy making entities and the relationships among them. Duke and Canady (1991) identify three reasons to study policy.

    First, many of the education policies likely to have a direct effect on the lives of students, parents, and teachers are local school policies. A state legislature may pass legislation concerning the allocation of resources for education, but the legislation does not become meaningful for clients, patrons, and employees until local policy decisions determine how the available resources will be utilized. Second, schools serving similar groups of students can differ greatly in areas such as student achievement, attendance, dropped rate, teacher morale, and school climate.

    The third reason to study school policies according to Duke and Canady (1991) is the fact that the number of locally developed policies is likely to increase in the future. Interest in shared decision making, teacher empowerment, school-site management, and the restructuring of schools suggests that the locus of educational policy making may be shifting. Duke and Canady point out that ample justification exists for the systematic study of local school policy. Such study promises to shed light on school effectiveness, the process of school improvement, and local control of education.

    In addition, Duke and Canady state as interest in at-risk students grows, questions need to be raised regarding the extent to which local school policies enhance or impede these youngsters’ chances for success. So frequent and so complicated have problems related to student attendance become that many school systems consider them to be separate from other discipline problems. This fact may be explained, in part, by the relationship between school attendance and state aid to education and the link between attendance and a student’s constitutional right to an education.

    Attendance rules include those pertaining to unexcused absence from school and class, tardiness, and leaving school without permission. Since, by law, students must attend school up to the state-mandated school-leaving age, attendance-related issues for local policymakers do not concern rules so much as the consequences for absenteeism and attendance practices (Duke and Canady, 1991). In recent years, school policymakers concerned about the relationship between the time spent in school and student learning have begun to condone denying course credit and awarding failing grades for chronic absenteeism.

    The number of absences resulting in denial of credit or a failing grade usually ranges from 10 to 24 in a semester (Sedlak et al, 1986). According to Eastwold (1989), the tyrant is likely to be a boy and to be in the eleventh or twelfth grade. The student is truant more often as the year progresses, and skips some classes more often than others. He says he skipped because he dislikes the classes or considers them to be too boring to attend. However, he does not necessarily intend to drop out of school. This student may have a job, or may have been asked by parents to work at home or care for children.

    Rood (1989) views absenteeism as a constant interruption of the learning process. The more absences a student accumulates, the less he or she can be expected to adequately participate in and understand classroom activities. Rood continues by stating that it is no secret that the skill levels of many high school students have declined while absenteeism continues to increase. He writes that on an average Monday, many urban high schools have an absence rate of more than 30 percent. It is common for many secondary students to miss 20 to 90 days of school in an academic year.

    Rood (1989), Levanto (1975), and Hegner (1987) have identified the following characteristics of non-attenders: Age – absenteeism increases as a student progresses through high school. Gender – in the first three years of high school, girls will have higher rates of absenteeism than boys will. Race – minority students are more likely to be absent than whites. School success – students with higher grades and/or IQs have better attendance. Program – students in college preparatory programs are present more often than those in vocational, general, or business programs.

    Family setting – students from a one-parent family has poorer attendance rates than those of the more traditional family. School involvement – participants in a variety of co-curricular activities will generally be in attendance more often than willing non-participants. Eastwold (1989) indicates that some researchers believe that truancy problems can be blamed on ineffective school attendance policies. In some cases the costs in time and energy to enforce compulsory education statutes seem to outweigh the benefits.

    As a result school will develop policies that devote the most energy to those students expected to have the best chance of success. Eastwold (1989) indicates that the burden of reducing truancy rates rests primarily with schools, and a message that can be drawn from the research is that schools can affect the truancy rate whenever they give high priority to effective attendance policies. Eastwold identified the most effective policies as those that have the following elements: Expectations and outcomes are clear and well publicized Policies are followed consistently by everyone Students are held responsible for their actions.

    If the revision of the district/building attendance policy seems a necessary part of the solution, there is no dearth of literature dealing with the subject. School authorities generally utilize one of these types of policies: Policies that attempt to provide incentives for good attendance. Policies that dispense punitive, administrative consequences, such as detentions or suspensions. Restrictive and punitive policies that penalize students academically by withholding credit or lowering grades when a number of predetermined absences are reached (Rood, 1989). Causes or Predictors of Student Absenteeism

    According to Woog (1992), three theoretical categories identify the causes or predictors of student attendance specifically are: those which identify the cause of the absenteeism with the student or his/her family characteristics, those which identify the student’s social or economic environment as the causal factor, and those which examine the effect of various school characteristics as influential in the absentee rate of students. The 1977 Educational Research Service report identifies age, IQ, achievement, religion, and co-curricular activities as associated with various rates of absenteeism.

    Older students, students living with one parent, students with lower IQ scores, students with lower grades, students who did not participate in school activities, and non-Jewish students all were noted to have higher absentee rates than did their counterparts. Galloway (1985) reports that frequently absent students have a fear of teachers or specific subjects. He also reports that the families of absent students were noted as scoring much higher on measurements of familial stress. Both of Gallaway’s reports identified an unfavourable parental attitude toward school as a significant influence on the absence rate of their children.

    Galloway’s (1985) research showed excessive absentees as students whose families had experienced financial problems or whose parents experienced poor health. Galloway suggests that the poor economic condition of the family may generate a negative attitude toward school either because the family needs the student to work and contribute to the family income or because education is not perceived to be an avenue to increased economic status. The largest factor in the average daily attendance of a school is generated from influences which occur independently of the school’s organizational or attendance policy characteristics (Petzko 1990).

    Petzko’s research concluded that student absenteeism is related to familial or cultural characteristics. School climate and organizational characteristics of the school have also been suggested as predictive factors in student absenteeism (Woog 1992). The Education Research Services Report (1977) suggests that staff/student relationship, quality of instruction, curriculum standards, and attendance procedures may affect absenteeism. Duke and Meckel (1980) studied two California high schools and identified five organizational variables

    potentially related to student attendance. Duke and Meckel conclude that division of labor, micro-level decision making, rewards and sanctions, macro-level decision making, training, and selection play a large part in the cause of attendance problems at the two schools. 30 An investigation by Greene (1963) attempted to determine if a significant difference existed between students having favourable and unfavourable attendance records and whether absenteeism varied significantly between economically advantaged and disadvantaged school communities.

    A variety of assessment instruments were used to compare the top and bottom 10 percent of attendance in two economically distinct high schools. Greene found that in both schools favourable attendees earned consistently higher marks than unfavourable attendees. In the economically disadvantaged school, favourable attendance was associated reliably with high IQ scores, high socioeconomic status, and parental opinion of the school. Greene concluded that absenteeism is a behaviour which is individually symptomatic of an unfavourable adjustment between the learner and the educational and social environment in which he/she is functioning.

    Description of Related Attendance Policies/Programs The decisions that are made when attendance policies are formed and the administering of these policies sometimes makes the idea of compulsory attendance an expensive one (Woog, 1992). Woog further suggests that administrators are confronted frequently by differing philosophies of teachers as they try to enforce attendance policies in a consistent manner. Teachers who do not feel a need to state, review, and implement age-appropriate attendance expectations make the implementation and administration of an attendance policy difficult for administrators.

    Woog (1992) reports that students also will not comply with policies. Woog further reports that rewards and/or consequences used in the attendance policies can be adjusted and improved in an attempt to reduce school attendance problems. Attendance policies address excused and unexcused absences and truancy. Numerous school district policies have a grade or course credit consequence for unexcused attendance. Academic sanctions deny the offender course credit or grade after a number of unexcused absences have been collected and deemed excessive. Bredahl (1981) discusses the effects of a new attendance policy in a rural school of 540 students.

    Students earned a credit if they satisfactorily completed course requirements and if they had regular attendance. If students were absent for more than 15 days, they would not receive credit for the course. Bredahl (1981) reports that the absence rate was reduced by 30 percent. The results of the implementation showed a decrease in the failure rate and also an increase in the attendance rate. Suprina (1979) reported that there was a drastic decline in the amount of class cutting as a result of the implementation of an attendance policy that withdrew a student from a class after three unexcused absences.

    Suprina (1979) discussed another policy which instituted a mandatory failing grade upon the seventh unexcused absence in a quarter. Suprina explained that parents were informed after the third, sixth, and seventh absences. Also a review board was established for appeal purposes. Suprina (1979) reports that the new policy implementation led to attendance being increased on an average of six additional school days per student, with failing students gaining an average of 10 school days. In the fall of 1974 a West Chicago high school established attendance as a top priority in the school.

    Daily calls were made to parents on all absences. Disciplinary consequences were initiated towards any student who had an unverified absence. Incentives were established for good attendance, including use of a student lounge, an unscheduled class period, off-campus lunch, and early dismissal. Attendance was charted and weekly meetings were held with all personnel involved in the attendance procedures (DuFours, 1983). Attendance increased from 87 percent in 1974 to 97 percent in 1982. DuFours (1983) further reports that improvement in attendance appeared to improve climate, attitude, and achievement.

    Perceptions/Attitudes of Attendance The performance or effectiveness of parents is affected by varying family conditions, the changing structure, mobility of family and poor socioeconomic circumstances. However, even where two parents are present in the home, they may not be effective parents. The character of the parents themselves, their family attitudes and attitudes towards their children, especially in the exercise of parenting skills, and their attitude towards and involvement in school, especially in support for the child, convey strong messages (Harte, 1995).

    The parents’ skills in the home and their attitudes towards the child in the school and towards school in general are linked to attendance performance. Parents of students with low attendance rates are often described as being only nominally interested in school, as rarely inquiring about studies, as never budgeting home study time, as fearing school and as avoiding teacher-parent interviews (Harte, 1995). Tardiness and Absences in the School Environment Many researchers have developed checklists of “deviant” school behaviors which are associated with poor school performance.

    In 1963 a Background Paper on Dropouts and Youth Employment stated that potential dropouts could be described and identified at least five years before they dropped out. Irregular attendance and frequent tardiness were two of the five drop-out indicators. Mizell (1987) included tardiness and excessive absences as part of twenty-one criteria which predict the likelihood of dropping out of school. Stradford (1993) found that tardiness and absences are characteristics of potential 9th and 10th grade at-risk students.

    Ligon and Jackson (1988) discovered that excessive absences and tardiness constituted the 3rd most common reason for student failure in school. Low attendants and habitual tardiness were among the common characteristics of low-achieving Hispanic high school students (Cuellar, 1992). Estcourt (1986) found that low achievement correlated with chronic absenteeism in high school students. Ediger (1987) included “cutting classes and frequent tardiness in school” among the indicators of at-risk students with drug and alcohol abuse problems. Like businesses, schools collect data on student tardiness and absences to learn about their populations.

    These behaviors are a barometer indicating the likelihood of student success. Many school interventions to improve student performance use tardiness and absences as indicators of success or failure of the intervention. However, the relationship among tardiness, absences, and grades and dropping-out or school failure is complex. Hotchkiss and Dorsten (1985) conducted a large, longitudinal study which provided part of the data for the High School and Beyond data base. In 1980 the answers of 58,000 sophomores and seniors generated data for the base year. The researchers did subsequent follow-up surveys in 1982 and 1984.

    After extensive analysis they found that, “Poor grades stimulate misbehavior and dropping out. Similarly, time spent with friends stimulates misbehavior and dropping out…. The predominant paths in these findings can be reduced to the following parsimonious model”. Home Influence on School Tardiness and Absences Students are products not only of their school but also of their community, and most especially their home environment. Within one school the family circumstances of the student population can vary greatly. Family stability, economics, and values are all intertwined and have an effect on the children.

    Family composition appears to have a substantial impact on student performance. Featherstone et al. (1992) studied 530 middle school students and found that, “… students from intact, two-parent families had fewer absences and tardies, higher grade point averages, and fewer negative and more positive teacher behavioral ratings than did those from reconstituted and single-parent families” In the book Bridges Out of Poverty (2001) Payne, DeVol and Smith contend that children and adults come to school and the workplace with values they learned at home.

    The authors postulate that there are certain values associated with the poverty, middle and wealthy classes. Schools and businesses operate with values from the middle class culture. Parents from the poverty class may sanction, condone, and reward attitudes and behaviors which may not reinforce school policies based upon middle class standards. Being poor also increases the likelihood that families are evicted from their homes or may need to move frequently. Single-parent households generally have lower incomes than two parent households.

    Of necessity, the custodial parent may be at work when the children are getting ready for or coming home from school. All of these factors – values, instability and lack of supervision – can affect students’ school attendance and punctuality. The U. S. Department of Education, National Center for Educational Statistics (1995) has documented the relationship of family income and absenteeism. In central-city high schools twelve percent of the students were absent per day; in public high schools with forty percent or

    more of the student population receiving free or reduced lunch ten percent were absent; and in schools with a lower free and reduced lunch rate seven to eight percent were absent. Lerman (2000) found that high school students from low-income and welfare families do less homework, have much higher rates of expulsion and suspension, and are absent from school more. Model of Deviance in High School CHAPTER III Methodology This chapter illustrates the methods and procedures made by the res

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