Survey of the Hidden Costs of Standard Eight Education to the Parents of Yala Division, Siaya District
The research investigated the hidden costs of Standard eight education to the parent in Yala Division of Siaya District. Nine schools randomly selected from Yala Division, were involved in the study. All of them were rural schools. In the study, forty-four subjects were used as the sample. These were 35 Parents and 9 Heapteachers. To collect data, questionnaires were administered to headteachers while responses were obtained from Parents by interview schedule. The major areas of cost which were investigated included, among others, Building Fund, Developmentt Fund, Activity Fees, Mock Fees, K.C.P.E. enrolment Fees, Materials for Practical Subjects, Exercise Books and Watchman's wages. Also investigated were the Parents' perceptions of the costs of standard eight education; the real costs of standard eight education to the parents; the real cost of standard eight education to the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, the congruency between the parents' perceived cost and the real cost; the most expensive element; the effect of the hidden costs on the academic achievement of the child; and whether there was any effect on the school attendance by children from the same family or home . ... (v) The findings Of the study indicated that Textbook$ and Exercise book$ were the most expensive element of standard eight education. The study findings showed no congruency between the parents' perceived costs (estimated at 72%) and the real costs (estimated at 26%) of standard eight education. The research findings further revealed that the effect of the hidden costs on academic achievement of the pupils was negligible because those pupils who could not ",. pay were given remission and extra tuition upon resuming their studies. The study also indicated that the average amounts paid by the parents to retain one child in standard eight in a public school was 1259 shillings per year. On the other hand the government spent an average of 3,777 shillings per child per year. The average cost of education was estimated at 5036 shillings per child per year. The results• of the study indicated that the Ministry of Education met 74% of the total cost of standard eight education while parents met 26% of the same cost. It was also revealed that parents found it difficult to meet their portion of standard eight education because of high retail prices of books and other items involved. The researcher concluded that when the Ministry of Education science and Technology decides to reduce its budget from the current 35% of national budget to 29% as recommended in Economic ,Management for Renewed Growth, Sessional Paper No.1 1986, the Parent’ portion of the cost of standard eight education' will. increase. Consequently placing a heavier burden on the Parents.