Perceptions of educators and dropouts toward leaving school early in band-operated Ontario native schools

Hancott, Bobby Dennis (1996) Perceptions of educators and dropouts toward leaving school early in band-operated Ontario native schools. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

This study had a dual purpose. The first was to compare the perceptions of educators with those of dropouts with respect to the following variables; school work and attendance, parental support, school life, career plans and guidance, belonging to school, school rules and regulations, relevance of school curriculum, and other possible reasons for dropping out. The second was to ascertain from educators and dropouts initiatives that could help students stay in school and/or return to school and complete their high school diploma. From this research several recommendations are made to the various Local Education Authorities and School Boards that could potentially help increase the success rate of Native students in school. -- A review of the literature indicated that many of the problems associated with dropping out dealt with the student's family backgrounds, personal characteristics and attitudes, and academic characteristics. However, Native youth face other barriers (irrelevant school curriculum, lack of parental support, insufficient career counselling and homesickness, etc) that influence them to drop out of school. Data were gathered by means of two questionnaires based on a review of the literature: one for educators; and one for dropouts. -- On the basis of this study, it was concluded that differences in perceptions of educators and dropouts toward early school leavers were overall statistically significant at the .05 level. It revealed that educators perceived school work and attendance as important factors in contributing to Native youth dropping out of school. With the exception of skipping school and classes, dropouts believed that school work and attendance did not affect their leaving decisions. -- Educators strongly agreed that insufficient career plans and guidance contributed to students decisions to drop out of school whereas dropouts did not consider this area contributed to the problem but long term planning was seen as somewhat of a factor. -- Educators felt that having a curriculum developed and taught by non-Natives was a factor in students deciding to terminate schooling. Dropouts felt that lack of involvement in extra-curricular activities and the fact that the development and teaching of the curriculum by non-Natives was somewhat of a factor in their decision to drop out of school. -- Dropouts were more neutral in their opinion about the lack of sufficient communication with parents and the community whereas educators felt that parents and teachers did not communicate enough and this contributed to dropping out. -- Both groups of respondents felt that student/staff relations was not an issue in contributing to student decisions to terminate schooling. Educators believed that a lack of parental interest and encouragement contributed to dropping out whereas dropouts did not consider this area contributed in their leaving decision. -- With respect to the relevance of the school curriculum, dropouts considered that this, somewhat, contributed to their leaving decisions whereas educators were more in agreement that it did. -- Overall, dropouts did not consider the listed reasons for other possible reasons for dropping out contributed in their leaving decisions, with, perhaps, the exception of having many friends who had dropped out of school. Educators agreed that little educational material in the home, having many friends who had dropped out, and living away from home while attending school influenced students to drop out. -- Educators indicated that parental support and encouragement was needed to help increase the success rate of Native students in school. They also stressed the need for better guidance services and more Native teachers. Approximately the same number of educators as dropouts suggested having a high school on the Reserve and more involvement in extra-curricular activities would help increase graduation rates. -- The findings of this study may have implications for all stakeholders involved in the education of Native children. Recommendations were made with respect to helping students develop career plans; establish effective communication between school personnel/parents and students; assisting students in residential situations; improving guidance applications within schools; addressing the use of culturally relevant material; increasing extra-curricular participation; and establishing a monitoring system for "at risk" students.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/5206
Item ID: 5206
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 158-169.
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1996
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Ontario
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Indians of North America--Ontario--Education; Dropouts--Ontario--Attitudes; Dropout behavior, Prediction of; Educators--Ontario--Attitudes

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