Holmes' Problem Solving Approach Can Be a Solution to The Truancy Problem

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About this sample

About this sample


Words: 1966 |

Pages: 4|

10 min read

Published: Jan 29, 2019

Words: 1966|Pages: 4|10 min read

Published: Jan 29, 2019

Table of contents

  1. Problem Identification
  2. Problem Analysis
  3. Proposed Problem Solutions
  4. Specification of Context
  5. Comparison and Conclusion

Question: Using Brian Holmes problem solving approach, identify an educational problem in your school or area and demonstrate how you can use the approach to investigate and attempt solutions to the problem.

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Problem Identification

Education is a vital thing in the life of every individual in the society. It is a key in life and gives one the insight and brilliance to tackle world challenges in a braver manner. However, education is faced with a number of challenges, which try hard to bring it down and undo its impacts on one’s life (Lynn et. al., 2010). One of the main challenges today is truancy. Truancy, which is described as any form of unauthorized and intentional absence from school, is a growing challenge and is continuing to broaden its effects on students after the introduction of free primary education. According to statistics and research, truancy starts to manifest itself among primary school children as early as in class one or even kindergarten. It is a growing problem in Kenya and needs attention in order to correct. According to Brian Holmes, such challenges in the educational sector can easily be solved using comparative education. Brian Holmes suggests that using the problem solving approach, tricky challenges to education can easily be reduced or solved using comparative education. From his perspective, comparative education, which is the comparison and analysis of educational facts in one country as compared to another, can be combined with the problem solving approach to solve educational challenges. In his problem solving approach, Holmes uses a set of steps, which he believes can lead us out of educational problems such as truancy (Lynn et. al., 2010). These steps include, problem identification, problem analysis, proposed problem solution, specification of context, comparison, and conclusion. In this problem solution essay example, we shall use these steps to set out solutions to truancy in Kenyan schools (Zajda and Rust, 2009).

Problem Analysis

Truancy is a common problem in schools worldwide and continues to challenge the education sector. If not dealt with at an early age, truancy is a deadly disease and can easily make one drop out of school. Truancy is believed to be caused by different factors across different countries. In Kenya, this problem is mostly associated with poor treatment at schools, which causes one to hate school and start truancy. In other countries like the United States, this problem is believed to be caused by early access to alcohol and too much freedom from parents at home. Unlike the United States, Kenya has higher rates of truancy and school dropouts and these figures continue to rise year after year (Zajda and Rust, 2009). From this observation, there is need for the government to step in and set up measures that will help children stick to school routines and finish their education as required. In Kenya, truancy manifests in children in different ways including not doing homework, avoiding stories involving school, talking ill of teachers and other students, changing routines for schools preparation, and irregular routines when coming back from school (Manzon, 2011). Parents and teachers need to be alert on the onset of such signs and talk to the student to ensure that they are having an easy time when at school. Continued truancy of students causes them to fail in exams. This causes despair and makes them hate school, which can easily lead to drop out in schools. Increased cases of school dropouts has adverse effects to the society and leads to increased crime cases, increased insecurity, and poor standards of living. This is basically because students who have dropped out of school seek new ways of surviving and find themselves stealing to earn a living. This is a loss of useful people in the society and a waste of resources at school (Zajda and Rust, 2009).

Proposed Problem Solutions

In order to curb truancy and its related effects on students, there is need for the government to come in handy and implement policies that will ensure that students adhere to school routines and attend school on a daily basis. According to a report presented by Bray, Adamson and Mason (2007), truancy can start as a result of either home setup and organization or school setup and organization. In this regard, there is need for the Kenyan government to research and find out the most prevalent causes of truancy in schools before coming up with solutions to the problem. The most prevalent causes of truancy resulting from home setup is lack of family support, family work and commitments, illness that is not treated in advance, and family poverty that leads to lack of uniform and school requirements. In another context, school related reasons for truancy include, peer influence, negative school experience like bullying, poor treatment by teachers and lack of proper care while at school. In comparison to the United States, which has fewer cases of truancy, the Kenyan government also needs to implement some of the strategies put in place to curb truancy (Manzon, 2011). The first measure that needs to be undertaken is to ensure that schools and districts have departments for careers awareness, counseling programs, non-academic courses, and apprenticeship programs. These will motivate students to pursue their career choices more seriously and develop a liking to school programs and routine, which reduces and stops truancy (Zajda and Rust, 2009).

In addition to that, the government is supposed to introduce strict school attendance policies, which will ensure that all students are accessing and continuing with their education (Kubow and Fossum, 2007). As an example, the government can state that students with more than ten unexcused absences will not be allowed to go to the next class. Such policies are supposed to ensure that students remain on track with their academic activities and finish school with better grades. In addition to that, the government is also supposed to pass strict laws on parents who give a lot of domestic work to students preventing them from doing homework or going to school (Kubow and Fossum, 2007). This will help parents to stay alert and observe their children’s progress at school and even encourage them to finish their homework and wake them early for school.

Research shows that when students feel isolated and out of place while at school, they can easily start to avoid school and thus become truant (Zajda and Rust, 2009). From this context, it is important that the government introduces programs that will help to bring students together as much as possible to help them feel better when at school. Such programs include games, group studies, communal activities, interschool and interclass competitions. In addition to that, the government is supposed to introduce advanced programs that will engage poorly performing students in coaching or tutorials. This will help such students to stay tuned on academic work even when at home and thus develop a liking to school and schoolwork. Such programs include such things like online tutorials, periodic online courses, and holiday tuition. Such programs enhance class work understanding and promote study while at home and during holidays, which reduces chances of being truant (Pang and Hui, 2008).

The government is also supposed to introduce rules and regulations that will ensure that parents are responsible for the schooling of their child. Such rules should ensure that a parent suffers fines when they cannot prevent their child from being truant. In addition to fines, such parents are supposed to be jailed and give guidance on how to punish their children and ensure that they are attending school as required. Such rules will help parents to be on track in regard to their child’s school attendance and performance (Zajda and Rust, 2009). From another perspective, such rules will instill discipline in children when they realize that their mistakes will be payable by their parents. This will help them to stay focused and disciplined while at school and when at home.

Specification of Context

Although the above solutions are the only possible way to solve truancy, there are many challenges that might come up during their implementation. The first challenge is the flexibility of the government to accept and plan on how to implement them (Pang and Hui, 2008). There is a lot of complacency and comfort in the education sector, which makes it difficult for the government to implement strict rules and regulations in one parliamentary sitting. Suggestion of such solutions might bring discussions and oppositions that will eventually result into dismissal of the solutions. As an example, passing laws that will cause parental punishment due to their child’s truancy habits might not be easily welcome by both parents and students and might even cause demonstrations and industrial actions. This can be disastrous to the government and might cause delay of important government projects and work (Kubow and Fossum, 2007).

In addition to that, it is difficult for the government to implement continuous online tutorials and examination due to lack of resources. Since the government has tight budgets and economic plans, it might not be easy to introduce additional expenditure without extensive consultations and planning (Pang and Hui, 2008). This will prevent implementation of such solutions thus allowing continuation of the problem. In addition to that, most teachers are very relaxed and might not be flexible to implement strict rules and regulations that will track every student’s attendance. There is a lot of laziness and complacency exhibited in schools among teachers is one of the main challenges facing the education sector and might not allow for implementation of new learning strategies and rules.

From another perspective, parents will also pose challenges when implementing new educational strategies and rules. Some parents give their children a lot of freedom and a lot of pocket money from an early age, which makes it difficult for them to support implementation of strict rules and regulations concerning schooling and truancy (Pang and Hui, 2008). To some parents, absence of their child from school creates more labor and company at home, which makes life better for them. Such parents will be a big problem to the implementation of rules that will require them to be jailed in case their children absented from school. In addition to that, government rules regarding to morals and conscience do not allow parents to receive punishment for mistakes done by their children (Manzon, 2011). This will also prevent any implementation of such rules and regulations thus allowing truancy to continue.

Comparison and Conclusion

In the United States, truancy is said to start at around age 15 and escalates with age to 21 (Cowen, Kazamias and Unterhalter, 2009). This trend is attributed to excessive freedom from parents and introduction to the use of alcohol. In Kenya, the trend is different and truancy begins at an early age. As early as 8 to 10 years, some students begin to show signs truancy and even refuse to attend schools completely. In most cases, this is usually the end of schooling to such children. They usually start providing labor in farms, begin to use drugs and eventually end on the streets as street beggars. Such children find it rough to settle in life and start a family.

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In conclusion, it is evident that truancy is a universal problem and is affecting the education sector in both developed and developing countries. A problem needs keen government intervention and support in order to reduce or stop. Truancy requires proper planning, budgeting, and implementation of all the suggested strategies in order to reduce or stop it. It is a universal problem and thus requires combined efforts of parents, teachers, students and the government (Cowen, Kazamias and Unterhalter, 2009).

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Cite this Essay

Holmes’ Problem Solving Approach Can be a Solution to the Truancy Problem. (2019, January 28). GradesFixer. Retrieved December 5, 2023, from
“Holmes’ Problem Solving Approach Can be a Solution to the Truancy Problem.” GradesFixer, 28 Jan. 2019,
Holmes’ Problem Solving Approach Can be a Solution to the Truancy Problem. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 5 Dec. 2023].
Holmes’ Problem Solving Approach Can be a Solution to the Truancy Problem [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2019 Jan 28 [cited 2023 Dec 5]. Available from:
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