Gender, household headship and children’s educational performance in Nigeria: debunking the myth of poor performance in female-headed households

  • Funmi Bammeke University of LagosAkoka, Lagos
Keywords: Gender, household, household headship, Children, Educational performance


This study examines how gender interacts with household headship to influence children’s educational performance. It evaluates the educational performance of children in senior secondary schools in Lagos, Nigeria by whether they live in male or female-headed households. The study shows no significant statistical difference in the performance of children in male and female-headed households, but shows that parents’ educational level, especially women’s formal education, influences their children’s educational performance. The study reveals that children’s educational performance is also dependent on support factors in the household. It also shows that though women heading households without partners may experience more constraint in terms of resources, they often strive to ensure that their children do not fulfill society’s expectation of poor performance. The study concludes on the need to empower household heads if their children must access knowledge, an important measure of human development.

Author Biography

Funmi Bammeke, University of LagosAkoka, Lagos
Department of Sociology