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Title: Levels and Gender Differences in Students' Retention and Completion Rates in Secondary Schools in Siakago
Authors: Nyaga, Peterson,Mugo
Keywords: Gender
Issue Date: Feb-2015
Publisher: Egerton University
Abstract: One of the major constrains in achieving the Millennium Development Goals in education and the Education for All (EFA) goals in developing countries is the high rate of student dropout in basic education The Kenya Government and other development partners have implemented various intervention measures to reduce secondary school dropout and improve student retention and completion rates. However, the school dropouts are reported in Siakago division with the girl child being more disadvantaged. This study sought to determine the levels of students retention and completion rates in Siakago Division. The study also sought to determine the gender difference in student retention and completion rates. The study also sought to establish the factors influencing student’s retention and completion rates in secondary schools. The study adopted descriptive survey research design. The target population for this study included 38 public secondary schools, 38 head teachers, 248 teachers, and 6 area education officers in Siakago Division. The sample size comprised of 20 head teachers, 40 completed cohorts of students from 20 schools, 50 teachers and 2 education officials. Purposive sampling was used to select 20 public secondary schools each with at least two completed cohorts. Stratified random sampling was used in selecting a sample of 50 teachers from the 20 schools. Purposive sampling was used to select two educational officers for key informant interview. Data was collected through two questionnaires, one interview schedule and two secondary data checklists. The instruments were validated by first ensuring that all the items in the instrument were based on the study objectives. Further, experts from the Department of Curriculum, lnstruction and educational Management validated the tools. Pilot testing was carried out in 15 secondary schools in the neighboring Mbeere sub-county. The reliability of the instrument was estimated using Cronbach’s alpha coefficient. The teachers and head teachers questionnaires generate reliability coefficients of 0.79 and 8.1 respectively and were therefore considered reliable. Quantitative data was analyzed using both inferential mainly t-test and descriptive statistics including frequencies and percentages. Qualitative data was analyzed by use of content analysis. Qualitative data was analyzed by use of content analysis. The study concluded that girls’ retention and completion rates were lower compared to boys. However, there was no statistically significance deference between girls’ retention and completion rates with those of boys’. The study also concluded that the factors influencing students’ retention and completion rates in secondary schools in Siakago Division included poor family background, lack of parental guidance, lack of school fees, poor academic achievement among students and early pregnancies and early marriages among girls. The findings are useful to the govemment in policy formulation, adding the existing knowledge on provision of education and management of the education sector, help in understanding the factors affecting student retention and completion rates among secondary schools.
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Education and Community Studies

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