You are on page 1of 28

G o v e r n me n t P r i ma r y &

A l - A b b a s Mi d d l e
S c h o o l B i a n g s a S h i g a r
2 1 - O c t - 2 0 1 3
Submitted by: Shabbir Ahmed

REDUCING ABSENTEEISM
AND TARDINESS AMONG
STUDENTS
AT
GOVERNMENT PRIMARY
SCHOOL BIANGSA SHIGAR
Report Action Research

THE AGHA KHAN UNIVERSITY
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT CENTER (PDC)
GILGIT BALTISTAN
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
1


INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND ............................................................................................. 2
Reconnaissance ........................................................................................................................................ 3
Significance of the Study ......................................................................................................................... 4
RESEARCH QUESTION ........................................................................................................................ 4
RESEARCH METHODOLOGY ............................................................................................................. 4
DATA COLLECTION TOOLS ............................................................................................................... 4
POPULATION ......................................................................................................................................... 5
SAMPLING ............................................................................................................................................. 5
ANALYSIS AND FINDINGS OF FIRST CYCLE ................................................................................. 5
Unawareness of Parents............................................................................................................................ 5
Introduction of Snack Time in School ...................................................................................................... 5
Visit with Religious Scholar ..................................................................................................................... 6
Activation of SMC ................................................................................................................................... 6
Findings of First Cycle ............................................................................................................................. 7
ANALYSIS AND FINDINGS OF SECOND CYCLE ............................................................................ 7
Use of Pulpit ............................................................................................................................................. 7
Assigned Home Visit Duty of a Teacher .................................................................................................. 7
Formation of Mothers' Committee ........................................................................................................... 8
Displaying Latecomers' Name on the Notice Board................................................................................. 8
Task Delegation to Latecomers ................................................................................................................ 8
FINDINGS OF CYCLE-2 ........................................................................................................................ 9
CONCLUSION ........................................................................................................................................ 9
APPENDICES ........................................................................................................................................ 10
Time Table for Cycle 1 ....................................................................................................................... 10
Time Table for Cycle 2 ....................................................................................................................... 11
Interview Protocol for Students (Appendix A) ....................................................................................... 12
Interview Protocol for Parents (Appendix B) ......................................................................................... 13
Interview Protocol for Teachers (Appendix C) ...................................................................................... 14
Meeting Minutes/Agenda for Meeting with Staff (Appendix D) ........................................................... 14
(Annex E, Teachers' Interview, 9th July, 2013) ..................................................................................... 15
Annex F, Teachers' Interview, 9th July, 2013 ........................................................................................ 15
(Annex G, Monitoring the First Action Step, dated 1
st
July, 2013) ........................................................ 17
Annex H, students' interview dated 24-06-13 ........................................................................................ 18
Annex I, parent's interview, dated 01-07-13........................................................................................... 19
Annex J, Monitoring the First Action Step, dated 11-07-13 .................................................................. 20
Annex K, Meeting Minutes, Dated 11-07-2013 ..................................................................................... 21
Annex K-1, Students Attendance Register (Before Action) June 2013 .................................................. 22
Annex K-2, Students Attendance Register (After Action) Sep, 2013 ................................................... 23
Annex L, Office Order, Dated 16-08-2013 ............................................................................................ 24
Annex M, MSG Formation Resolution, Dated 10-7-2013 ..................................................................... 25
Annex N, Latecomers List, 17-6-2013(Before Action) .......................................................................... 26
Annex O, Latecomers List, 12-9-2013 (After Action) ........................................................................... 27




Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
2

INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND
Regularity and timely arrival plays a pivotal role in building school culture
and discipline. If the students and teachers of an institution are not punctual, the
school discipline is affected and also disturbs the schedule and work-plan of the
school mainly teaching and learning process, behavior of teacher towards student and
cause gaps among the stakeholders.
The area where I was intended to initiate an action research is a far furlong,
backward, underprivileged and illiterate environment where many school problems
including a burning issue of absenteeism and tardiness of students exist. It had been
observed that about 40% of students could not reach the school before morning
assembly, till at the end of the assembly, there were about 10% of the students still
missing. To discourage the late arrival practice, we, the teachers were used to punish
them corporally. When they were punished they tried to come in time for a few days
but most of them without having breakfast, untidy hair, and uniforms were not ironed.
The observation proved that it was not the solution and if the students are treated in
such a way for a long time it would bring gap between students and teachers which
caused poor performance, dropouts and harmful elements for the society.
Secondly the students' daily attendance ratio in my school was not more than
93% and during an academic session and some students' attendance did not cross 75%
of total possible attendance. In both the issues the major factor was their parents
because they did not timely prepare their children for school. Due to this, some
students were late for school, consequently the absenteeism problem increased in the
school.
Both the issues were problematic in school discipline as well as in learning
process, teachers' behavior, students' self-respect and confidence, relationship
between teachers and students, between students and parents, and teachers and
parents. This affected the learning of all the students and they could not pay full
attention on their studies and they could not enjoy their learning. When they were
mentally disturbed either of their own absent or late arrival or due to any other student
who was punished before them, they become anxiety. Besides these, the attitude of
teachers was also affected; they usually get aggressive and could not treat with the
learners joyfully. Consequently, it brought gaps among the stakeholders.
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
3

Reconnaissance
It is a good saying by someone, "Every hour misspent is lost forever, and
future years cannot compensate for lost days at this period of your life". Absenteeism
and tardiness were very common in my school. When we discussed about tardiness
and absenteeism in the staff, there rose some questions for instance why the vary
student arrives late, what his parents do, If the student is disturbed by someone in or
out the school, whether the parents pay due attention on the needs of their children or
not and do the parents care for the students' schooling or not? These questions leaded
to the causes for which students get school late or observe absent. There were several
responses for these questions, and it was general observation that parents do not care
for their children's schooling, they do not care for their children. When there were
some extra household job than usual, the parents made their children to stay at home
to do that particular job and if the mother had to go somewhere, she asks the elder
child to accompany her thus students get absent and such jobs are too common in
most of the rural areas.
The situation was much challenging for me to intervene, to improve students'
annual attendance rate, as well as to get them school in time. I have to change the
priority of the parents. I had to change their understanding about education and to
give top priority for the schooling of their children and to develop this understanding
was the most challenging task for me. Constrain that opposed the action research was
the aged people as they prefer high pasturing pet caring over education. Among these
constrains nothing was absolute if I do not ask them not to keep cattle and I did not
ask them not to keep cattle.
The social culture was sometimes challenging in such a way that the people
are illiterate and unaware. They did not understand the importance of education. Most
of the parents were educating their children as it has become a part of their routine.
The economic issue was also a problem.
I was intended to do an action research in my school to increase attendance
ratio and to discourage tardiness of students. Through this action research I tried to
regularize the students in their classes. This research involved the parents, notables,
SMC and teachers. In my action research I focus parents particularly mothers by
arranging sessions to motivate them to send their children to school in time and also
told them to ensure maximum attendance for their children in school. Through
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
4

sessions I made them realize the importance of being a student regular in school and
benefits of timely arrival which affect their personality.
Significance of the Study
The intended action research was a significant and beneficial study for certain
stakeholders. As an action researcher the changes and the processes done to undertake
the change improved my research practices and pedagogical practices. Changes in my
school on the basis of action research enabled me to understand my practices. While
doing action research I had to reflect and analyze my practices, causes for which the
practice was done and the effects of the intervention introduced, helped me during the
research as well as in my future practices to reflect my practices.
The activities improved teachers' attitude toward students while teaching and
in social activities. Teachers were motivated to change their attitude and to make the
classroom activities interesting and encouraging for the students. When the teachers'
attitude was changed positively, the classroom activities became interesting and the
students were encouraged and the learning process improved. The students started to
come to school to enjoy the learning. The students were given due respect, the
behavior of teacher towards students was friendly and caring. Thus the students
became confident enough to share their ideas.
RESEARCH QUESTION
For the purpose of my research, I developed a research question, which is
"How can I reduce absenteeism and lateness practices in my school?"
There rose some more questions as under from research question
What are the causes due to which students get late?
What strategies should I use to address these issues?
RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
The Action Research Approach was use to mainly as research methodology.
DATA COLLECTION TOOLS
Observation, meeting minutes, interview protocol, documents analysis and
reflective journals were used as source of collecting data in my action research work.
These sources provided me sound knowledge about the causes of happenings this
situation and also its effects in effective learning and teaching process as well school
discipline.
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
5

POPULATION
Students, their parents and teachers at Government Primary school Shigar
SAMPLING
9 students and 9 parents ( their parents) who were found observing
absenteeism and tardiness more frequently during the year and 3 teachers who were
found addressing this issue were selected for interview.
ANALYSIS AND FINDINGS OF FIRST CYCLE
Unawareness of Parents
My data explored that the main
reason of students' unpunctuality and
absenteeism found as unawareness of
parents and due to which they do not
prepare their children for school timely
as well as they do not give priority to
school's discipline and they don't give
importance to education. It was also
verified by another teacher during her interview. (Annex E & F, Teachers' Interview,
9
th
July, 2013) Moreover, my reflection and observation proved these statements.
(Annex G, Monitoring the First Action Step, dated 1
st
July, 2013). To address the
issue I conducted sessions with parents to enhance their awareness about education
and importance of being regular at school. In this session 19 parents, all teaching staff
and students were present. Head teacher and chairman SMC addressed the audience
putting stress on regularity and punctuality of students in school activities.
Introduction of Snack Time in School
It was came to know
that some students come
without breakfast in the
school who are curios to
study while some students get late having
their breakfast at home due
to their mother's illness or
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
6

domestic engagement. (Annex H, students' interview dated 24-06-13, & Annex I,
parent's interview, dated 01-07-13) To ensure their attendance in time at school, I
introduced snack time at school with the collaboration of staff. For this purpose, I
reviewed time table and spared 30 minutes as snack time period. This was a
productive activity to overcome the lateness habit.
Visit with Religious Scholar
Imam e Masjid of the village is
the most prominent figure in the area so I
visited him to seek his cooperation in the
best interest of the community in
enhancement of education through
punctuality. In this connection I
requested him to use pulpits for the holy
purpose of spreading education with its
requisite standard and to motivate public in this regard. I shared the problem which
school was facing in term of late arrival and absenteeism of the students.
Consequently the students were facing difficulty and also caused of failure and
dropout from the school. On my request he addressed the public at different Islamic
historical events and also informal discussion and tried to motivate the parents
deliberating Islamic point of view. This activity proved a strong cooperation to
resolve the hurdle which my school was facing.
Activation of SMC
There is fundamental role of
SMC in my school as the members are
the founders of the school they are
providing remunerations for teachers
and bearing all the expenses so they
have to be focused on resource
generation and infra-structure due to
which their attention was not over this
issue. Therefore, I conducted a meeting with the SMC to get their attention on the
lateness and absenteeism issue which I was intended to overcome. (Annex J,
Monitoring the First Action Step, Dated 11-07-2013 & Annex K, Meeting Minutes,
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
7

Dated 11-07-2013) On my request the SMC members communicated with the parents
of late comers and absentees to reduce these practices. This activity was ascertained
much profitable in term of reducing absenteeism especially tardiness. (Annex K-1 &
K-2, Students' Attendance Register, June VS Sep, 2013)
Findings of First Cycle
At the end of cycle-1 of my action research work and detailed analysis, I came
to find the following major points:
Parents are not much awaked regarding rapidly changing world and need of
education.
Parents' attention is diverted towards business and mining and they do not give
priority to education
Health conditions of the villagers is found as barrier in absenteeism as whole
Sparing snack time proved somehow a solution in this regard
Religious scholars are beneficial in motivating parents
SMS can be utilized in solving issues relating to parents and community
ANALYSIS AND FINDINGS OF SECOND CYCLE
Keeping in view the analysis and findings of the cycle I arranged cycle 2 of
action research as some of my interventions were not as successful as it was expected
and some of them were very fruitful. The purposeful activities were carried on and
some other types of interventions made to overcome the issue.
Use of Pulpit
As discussed I cycle-1 that the religious scholar is most
prominent figure in the village and his sayings are considered
very valuable. Therefore, I found it very reasonable to active
the Molana in motivating the parent to give full attention of
their kids' education and to act upon school's rules and
regulations.
Assigned Home Visit Duty of a Teacher
A teacher was deputed to visit parent and report the changes in their attitude
on regular base and to realize them the barriers and hurdles rising due to late coming
in the school. The teacher frequently visited home of those students who were
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
8

habitually late comers and told the parents regarding school's intention regarding the
improvement of their children. This act was found as a major source to improve
students' attendance. (Annex L, Office Order, Dated 16-08-2013)
Formation of Mothers' Committee
It was explored during teachers' interview and also verified by personal
observation that mothers can play vital role in kids' education. A major caused was
explored through students' interview that the kids do not get breakfast in time that is
why they get late for school. To ensure students' preparation in time and also to play
supportive role in school activities, Mothers' Committee consists of 05 members was
formed in leadership of vice principal. (Annex M, MSG Formation Resolution, Dated
10-7-2013)The committee visited many parents informally and made aware the
parents to ensure students' attendance as well as timely arrival at school. Due to the
intervention of the committee, the attendance ration was rapidly enhanced.
Displaying Latecomers' Name on the Notice Board
Another major step was taken in this regard was displaying the name of
latecomers at notice board. This activity was proved as a strong source to assure the
arrival of students in time because when students saw their name as latecomer, they
felt their insult and tried their best to avoid this. (Annex N, Latecomers List, 17-6-
2013 & Annex O, Latecomers List, 12-9-2013)
Task Delegation to Latecomers
The encouragement of students by
delegating them specific tasks prove helpful source
in reducing late coming habit. The latecomers was
deputed to arrange assemble and morning praying
activities for next day. To perform their assigned
duties, latecomers were arrived in time. In this
way, it was found a strong strategy for timely arrival as well as enhancing leadership
skills.

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
9

FINDINGS OF CYCLE-2
At the end of the cycle-2, the following points were found as major findings
during my intervention to overcome lateness and absenteeism habit of the students:
Deputing a specific person to contact with parents was an effective way
Notables of the society can be utilized in school's activities
Mothers are the effective supporters in teaching and learning process
Students' habit can be changed without punishing them
Alternate ways can be used in discouraging students' ill-habits
Encouragement of students can change their life style
CONCLUSION
The institutions are run mainly with sound discipline and successful institution
has the rules and regulations are the super at all stages. Late arrival in the school and
remaining absent can damage the school's reputation and productivity badly. Both the
issues are problematic in school discipline as well as in learning process, teachers'
behavior, students' self-esteem and confidence, relationship between teachers and
students, between students and parents, and teachers and parents. Consequently, it
brings gaps among the stakeholders. The traditional way to discourage this habit had
been corporal punishment in the school but I was seeking alternative regarding this
habit and the course ADE: ELM enabled me to address this issue by doing an action
research through which I succeeded to enhance attendance ratio.
I have tried my best to overcome this issue through direct intervention by
involving students, parents particularly mothers, teachers, notables of the society and
religious scholars to put their share in this regard by developing a vision for the new
generation who are responsible citizens for upcoming competitive future.


Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
11

APPENDICES
Time Table for Cycle 1
S.
No.
Stages Beginning and
closing time
Monitoring Durati
on
Comments
1 Meeting with
staff
17 June,13 Observation +
meeting minutes
01 day
2 Address with
the morning
assembly
18 June,13 Observation +
Document
Analysis
01 day
3 Sampling 20 June,13 Observation+
Document
Analysis
01 day
4 Students
interview
24,25,27
June,13
Observation +
interview
protocol
03
days

5 Parents'
interview and
session for
Parents
1,3,6 July,13 Observation,
interview
protocol
03
days

6 Developing
Interview
Protocol for
teachers

8 July,13

Interview
protocol

01
days

7 Interview and
session with
teachers

9, 10 July ,
July,13
Observation,
interview
protocol, minutes

02
days

8 Meeting with
SMC
11 July,13 Observation,
Minutes of
Meeting
01 day
9 Session with
Religious
Scholar
12 July,13 Observation,
Agenda of
meeting
1 day
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
11

Time Table for Cycle 2
S.
No.
Stages Beginning and
closing time
Monitoring Duratio
n
Comments
1 Classroom
Lectures
16, 14, 19, 20 &
21
st
August, 13
Observation +
Reflection
05 day
2 Address of
Molana with the
morning
assembly
22, 24, 26
August,13
Observation 03 day
3 Molana's speech
to public on
weekly dua
30 Aug,13 Observation 01 day
4 Awareness
Session for
women in three
groups
2,3,4 Sep,13 Observation +
Reflection
03 days
5 SMC's home
visit regarding
the issue
9,11,12 Sep,13 Observation +
Reflection
03 days

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
12

Interview Protocol for Students (Appendix A)
1) It is observed many students including you come to school late. In your
opinion why the students get late for school, be sure the discussion of this
interview will be confidential?
2) When do you wake up in the morning? When do you go to bed?
3) What time do you have your breakfast?
4) Do your parents help you in getting prepare for school, if yes, who?
5) What sorts of work you have to do before coming to school?
6) Whenever you get late for school, what do you feel?
7) When you late for school, do your father, mother or someone else goes to
school with you?
8) What type of excuses do you offer when a teacher inquires about lateness?
9) Do you know if a teacher tried to meet your parents? If yes what happened
then?
10) It also observed that some students including you get absent from school, why
does this happen?
11) In your opinion is the school starting time suitable for you according to the
context? If not what will you suggest?
12) Is the school and classroom environment joyful for you? Or do you enjoy the
schooling? If not, what is lacking in your opinion?
13) Which factor in the school culture attracts you towards school and which de-
tracks you away from school?
14) Will you suggest any change in school culture that will help to make the
school environment favorable for the students and help to reduce absenteeism
and lateness?

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
13

Interview Protocol for Parents (Appendix B)
The lateness and absenteeism is a usual practice in our school which is
affecting our school's quality and productivity. It is also disturbing the school general
discipline and teaching learning process. In our school there is no issue of teachers'
shortage or teachers' ability but the learning process is not being effective though
teachers usually do not miss any period and all the teachers are working hard. In my
personal opinion this situation is because of lateness and absenteeism of students.
Although there are many students committing lateness and absenteeism but it was
difficult and useless to invite all the parents for discussion so I selected only those
students and their parents who have committed lateness or absenteeism more
frequently for interview and discussion. Regarding your observations and suggestions
will be valuable for me to do my research effective and to improve the school's
efficiency and effectiveness. The discussion with you will be considered as
confidential.
1) In your opinion why your child/ children get late for school or absent?
2) Do you help your child/ children in getting prepare for school?
3) If no, what are the barriers?
4) If yes, what is lacking or need to improve?
5) Did you ever think about the losses of lateness and absenteeism of your child?
6) May I ask you about your behavior towards your children and other family
members?
7) Generally students blame their parents, involving them in domestic jobs, for
lateness and absenteeism, what do you say?
8) You know, getting late in the school is little bit a harmful indicator for future
life, it become part of life and part of one's personality. What do you
understand about this? If committed, what steps will you take in future?
9) What is your perception about teachers' arrival in the school?
10) How often you engage your kids in household jobs and school tasks?
11) Do you share about your perception with your kids that why he/she is going to
school? Why education? If yes, please share, if not please help to develop a
vision for your kids.
12) You know that today's student is tomorrow's leader. In which way we have to
prepare them together?
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
14

13) The absenteeism proves a lot of losses for students. How will you overcome
these losses after several days' absenteeism?
Interview Protocol for Teachers (Appendix C)
1. As you know that I am doing an action research to discourage absenteeism and
late arrival of students in our school for which interviews from selected
students and parents have been taken. The third interview is to be taken from
the teachers. There for you are requested to respond these questions carefully
so that we may do some actions to discourage the said practices.
2. As you know that lateness and absenteeism are the burning issues in our school
and is affecting the learning of students as well as the school discipline. What
do you think about this issue?
3. Do you get school on time/ in time or late?
4. In your opinion why students get school late or absenteeism occurs?
5. Some students say that they cannot understand some of the lectures. Why this
happen and do you think that it affects the regularity of students?
6. From the interviews of students and parents I came to know that due to the
illness of their mothers some students get late for school. Do you agree? If yes,
how?
7. The second thing I noticed from the interview is that join family system also
affects the regularity of students. What do you say?
8. What will you suggest to discourage the absenteeism and late arrival practices
in our school?
9. Do you feel any improvement in term of attendance and regularity of students
before and this day of action research? If yes, how will you describe this and if
not what is lacking?
Meeting Minutes/Agenda for Meeting with Staff (Appendix D)
Need of PTI Teacher
To Discuss on the issues related to teachers and students
To discuss about the construction of new classrooms
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
15

Annex E, Teachers' Interview, 9th July, 2013
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
16

Annex F, Teachers' Interview, 9th July, 2013

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
17

(Annex G, Monitoring the First Action Step, dated 1
st
July, 2013)

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
18

Annex H, students' interview dated 24-06-13

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
19

Annex I, parent's interview, dated 01-07-13



Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
21

Annex J, Monitoring the First Action Step, dated 11-07-13


Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
21

Annex K, Meeting Minutes, Dated 11-07-2013

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
22

Annex K-1, Students Attendance Register (Before Action) June 2013

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
23

Annex K-2, Students Attendance Register (After Action) Sep, 2013

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
24

Annex L, Office Order, Dated 16-08-2013

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
25

Annex M, MSG Formation Resolution, Dated 10-7-2013

Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
26

Annex N, Latecomers List, 17-6-2013 (Before Action)
Report Action Research

Government Primary & Al-Abbas Middle School Biangsa Shigar |
27

Annex O, Latecomers List, 12-9-2013 (After Action)