30 May 2017

Indonesian Teachers’ Perspectives on the Impact of Child Work on Students’ Learning Outcomes

Robertus Raga Djone, 2015
Adeleide University

Abstract

The relationship between educational failure and child work has been found in many studies. Some claim that child work does not impact significantly on students’ attendance, while others argue that child workers suffer from low achievement. In the Indonesian context, there are a lack of studies on the impact of child work on students’ learning outcomes.
Consequently, this research examined the perspectives of teachers in five junior high schools in Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara Indonesia on child work. These were investigated through semi-structured interviews that focused on students’ learning engagement and academic achievement.

The results of this study suggest that working did not impede school attendance. Government programs that assisted schools and poor families supported school attendance. However, this study indicated that child workers who had high intensity of work were likely to disengage and fail. Physical tiredness, lack of parental attention and psychological challenges were detrimental to child worker success. A strategy that includes parental attention, along with pedagogic and psychological approaches and relevant government policies could contribute to child workers’ improved learning outcomes.

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