School -home related causes of truancy and influence on pupils' academic achievement in lower primary schools, Butere West Zone in Kakamega County, Kenya
MetadataShow full item record
Truancy is unexcused and unlawful absence from school, typically without parental or school administration knowledge or consent.Various school personnel, parents, community and children welfare officials among others are consistently concerned with the issue of truancy in schools. Perhaps the most pertinent question then is; what is causing pupils to be truant from school? This research has therefore considered school and home related factors influencing truancy in lower primary schools in Butere West Zone of Kakamega County, Kenya and its influence on pupil's academic achievement. Truancy is costly; it costs pupils on their education resulting in reduced earning capacity. Pupils with the highest truancy rates have the lowest academic achievement rates. In addition, truants are most likely to drop out of school. Pupils in lower primary school in Butere West Zone especially in grade three have recorded most truancy rates in the past years. Parents, teachers, pupils, the community and educational officers have associated the vice with school and home related factors in the zone. The study was guided by Abraham Maslow humanistic theory which asserts that our actions are motivated in order to achieve certain needs. The study adopted descriptive research design. The target population was all standard three pupils in Butere West Zone, head teachers, class three teachers and parents of the truants. Stratified and purposive sampling was used to sample six clusters, 12 head teachers, 12 class three teachers and 24 parents from accessible population. To collect data questionnaires were administered to head teachers and class three teachers of identified schools then interviews contacted with parents of selected truant pupils. A pilot study was carried out in two schools in the zone. The collected data was coded and analyzed using descriptive statistics: frequencies, percentages and means. The results were presented using frequency distribution tables, pie -charts and percentages. The study findings revealed that teacher- pupil relationship contributed to pupil truancy where instances of teacher harassing pupil were high. There were cases of bullying in schools, curriculum which was examination oriented that influenced truancy among lower primary school pupils. Also the home factors causing truancy included poor socio-economic status -of parents, the type of families the pupils came from which were large/ polygamous and parents' level of education where parents who had attained low education, had more truant cases. The physical facilities and Teaching/Learning materials did not seem to contribute much in pupil's truant behaviour. From the findings of the study, it was clear that truancy affects pupils' academic achievement where truant pupils performed poorly in their academics. The study recommended that the government intervenes in schools to stop canning and illegal punishment forms that led to pupil truancy and also step up poverty reduction programmes in order to reduce its effects on pupil truancy.