There are multiple aspects that can straightforwardly manipulate and undercut educational or scholastic performance of students. One most intricate reason of the occurrence of achievement gap is the problem with money and the lack of resources that are conducive to learning. This is defined as the difference between the levels of affluence or way of living of the wealthy and the underprivileged members of the society especially the student learners. Involvement of families particularly the parents is connected to improvement of students’ performance. Also, the school and the teachers must be vigilant and patient in providing comprehensive instructional materials and knowledge to their students. In this regard, this paper assimilates factors that can help achievement gap and can positively influence academic and achievement performance. Also, it will tackle about the effects of poverty to the performance of students in school and the underlying responsibility of parents and teachers to assist students in this concern.
Identifying the Problem
The achievement gap in the area of education is the product of failure and lack of drive of students to learn and finish their courses of study. This can be evidences of low grades, test scores, drop-out rates, and the inability to pass and complete the required subjects or courses. Achievement gap lies between the social status and cultural differences of student learners. Children who are raised in poverty rarely face daily challenges that destabilize good quality in academic performance. Parents with small income or earnings are frequently weighed down by low self-worth, hopelessness in their livelihood and a sense of incapability to cope with life’s challenges (Ferguson, Bovaird & Mueller, 2007). This boils down to their failure in sustaining the needs of their children especially in their education. Hence, the struggles of these students in achieving proficient performance in their studies connote lack of parental supervision, inadequate support from the school, incompetency.
One common obstacle of students is their slow understanding and comprehension with regards to their school works like shortfall in computing, reading and writing skills. This can be because of inadequate parental guidance, incapacity to buy books and other educational materials, usage of drugs, malnutrition among others. As a consequence of these factors, students tend to lose their self-confidence and they end up failing their subjects in school.
Various researches illustrated how different factors can have a say to achievement gap; these are peer pressure and bad influences, negative stereotyping or typecasting, and cultural biases (American Psychological Association, 2006). Nowadays, there are a lot of foreign student learners that came from other culture or countries that are starting to conquer other region and finish their studies there. Because of this, they go through cultural differences, bullying incidences and traumatic depression. Because of differences in race, skin color and culture, students tend to have conflicts with one another.
Solution to the Problem
In order to bridge the gap in the academic performance or achievement of students who might be suffering from cultural depression, poverty or lack of nutrition, schools can definitely make a vast difference in this problem or issue. In order to achieve the skills that students need, their relationship with their parents and educators must be strong. Parents and teachers should have the compassion and the patience to help the students in achieving their academic goals in order to prepare them for their future careers after schooling. They should cultivate in the minds of children that cultural differences and social status should not come in their way, thus they should focus in their studies to be able to obtain knowledge. Children who are suffering or undergoing depression and other health problems should be monitored by health practitioners so that they may not get worse and in order for them to catch up with their studies.
Rather than putting all the blame to those families are reluctant and not willing to participate actively in their children’s schooling, educators and school organizations should partake in involving themselves by developing solutions that might be helpful for students, engaging them and their families into some school activities so that they may know how the school support their schooling and academic performance (Becker & Luthar, 2002). And this move can also build trust among parents and students that the school and its teachers are willing to help them in times of problems of difficulties. Some resolutions to bridge achievement gap are lessening of class sizes per room, conducting different educational programs in the community, uplifting the academic standards, providing highly competitive educators, giving health assistance for poor families, donating of educational materials for less fortunate students and decreasing the instances of bullying and racial concerns.
Schools, teachers and parents play an equally important and significant role in the students’ educational performance and accomplishments. To address this issue of achievement gap thoroughly, comprehensive approaches to education restructuring and improvements should be intended so that it can help diminish the societal and financial disadvantages that deter educational achievement of students as well as the opportunities of future career progress and advancements. There are different integration that can be done by educational institutions, educators and parents to support and endorse different health and educational programs for student learners (Steen & Noguera, 2011). Thus, some school leaders from different organizations are now investing in different undertaking and programs to teach the parents about the utilization of technology. This is one of the resolutions for parents to cope up with the innovation of technology so they can still guide their children in this kind of medium.
Furthermore, to really appoint and instruct student learners in achieving academic performance, they must put forth various ways and means that are racially and culturally receptive and suitable for their mission to be knowledgeable and academically competitive. The community should also try to help out and create campaigns that will be helpful and useful for everyone who are involved in the achievement gap issues.
American Psychological Association. (15, July 2006). “Stereotype threat widens achievement
gap.” Retrieved from http://www.apa.org/research/action/stereotype.aspx
Becker BE, Luthar SS. (2002). “Social–emotional factors affecting achievement outcomes among disadvantaged students: Closing the achievement gap.” Educational psychologist. 2002;37(4):197-214. doi:10.1207/S15326985EP3704_1.
Ferguson H, Bovaird S, Mueller M. (2007). “The impact of poverty on educational outcomes
for children. Paediatrics & Child Health. 2007;12(8):701-706.
Steen, S. & Noguera, P. (13, July 2011). “A broader and bolder approach to school reform:
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