Truancy: How food insecurity, parental supervision, and other factors influence school attendance of the Seychelles adolescents

Abdul-Aziz SEIDU, Francis ARTHUR-HOLMES, Ebenezer AGBAGLO, Bright OPOKU AKINKORAH

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

Abstract

Truancy is identified as one of the key problems that school directors in the Seychelles face. Yet, it has received little attention by the key stakeholders of education in the country. Moreover, as research on truancy among in-school adolescents in the Seychelles remains uncharted, specific interventions that are adopted to curb this issue have yielded no results. This study investigated the prevalence of truancy and its associated factors among in-school adolescents in Seychelles. Using data of 1,833 in-school adolescents from the 2015 Seychelles Global-based School Health Survey, the study employed descriptive statistics and binary logistic regression to model the factors associated with truancy. While the results show that the prevalence of truancy among in-school adolescents was 25.9%, gender differences were observed (28% males vs 24.4% females). In-school adolescents who experienced hunger (AOR=1.28, 95% CI=1.02, 1.60), consumed alcohol (AOR=1.89, 95% CI=1.49,2.41), engaged in fight (AOR=1.66, 95% CI=1.31, 2.12), smoked (AOR=2.05, 95%CI=1.51, 2.77), were bullied (AOR=1.38, 95% CI=1.10, 1.75), and experienced an attack (AOR=1.55, 95% CI=1.20, 2.01) had higher odds of being truants. However, students whose parents checked what they do at their free time had lower odds of being truants (AOR=0.78, 95% CI=0.61, 0.89). The findings, therefore, highlight the need for school authorities to provide school environments which are free from physical fights, attacks and bullying. To reduce the level of truancy in the Seychelles, schools should have strict measures to curtail the factors that predispose adolescents to this social problem. Parents should be encouraged to monitor their children at home so that they can identify any changes in their behaviour. The government of Seychelles and welfare institutions must consider hunger as serious problem resulting in truant behaviour among in-school adolescents and provide welfare support to families with very low incomes. Finally, the government should implement truancy laws that will sanction truant students and their parents for allowing them to stay at home.
Original languageEnglish
Article number106377
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
Volume135
Early online date19 Jan 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Ltd

Keywords

  • In-school adolescents
  • Truancy
  • Hunder
  • Seychelles
  • Hunger

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