Poor learner performance in mathematics at grade 12 level: a study of a secondary school in Ndola district of the Copperbelt province.

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Lombe, Lucas
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The University of Zambia
The study investigated poor learner performance in mathematics at grade 12 level at Secondary School A. The study adopts a Mixed Method Approach by employing the Convergent Parallel Design. The target population comprised all stakeholders in the provision of secondary education including teachers, the district and provincial educational offices and union representatives, the pupils and parents. Purposive sampling was used to select key informants to the study. Probability sampling techniques were used to select pupils and teachers from Secondary School A. The total study sample was 125. Two instruments were used for data collection in the study: the self-administered questionnaire and semi-structured interviews. Qualitative data were collected and analyzed on an on-going process as themes and sub-themes that emerged through thematic analysis. Quantitative data were analyzed in Strata by way of binary logistic regression. The findings showed that Quality of Instruction, Teacher Motivation, Teacher Qualification, Peer Pressure, Pupil Attitude, Pupil Age, High Teacher/Pupil Ratio, Low Parental Involvement and high Exposure to Social Media had bearing on poor learner academic performance in mathematics. On the other hand, Parental involvement, Pupil attitude, Exposure to social media and Teacher/pupil ratio were significant predictor variables for poor learner performance at p < 0.05. Based on the findings of the study, it was concluded that, the barriers to improving learning outcomes in Zambia are many and cut across both the demand and supply side, and interact across the school, district, provincial and national levels. The study recommended that parents should get involved in pupil’s education in order to help monitor children’s performance through homework as well as monitoring the time spent on social media and other vices.
Mathematics--Study and teaching. , Mathematics--Study and teaching (Secondary).