Influence of parents’ socio-economic status on their participation in children’s pre-school education in Kayole, Nairobi County, Kenya
Mwangi, Mary Wakiuru
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Over the recent years, parental participation in their children’s education has been centre of focus at different fora including research. More studies have been done in relation to parental level of participation and how they influence with their children’s education but limited studies have focused on how parents’ socio-economic variables contribute positively to their participation in pre-school children’s education. The purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of parents’ socio-economic status, education, occupation and income) on their level of participation (communication, decision making and collaboration) in pre-school children’s education. Strategies used by schools to enhance parental level of participation in their children’s pre- school education were also investigated. The study was guided by Abraham Maslow’s theory of motivation and Epstein “model” of parental participation. A descriptive survey design was employed. All preschool teachers and parents in Kayole Zone, Nairobi county were targeted of which sample size was obtained. A simple random sampling procedure was used to get 35 pre-school teachers and 120 parents. Questionnaires for preschool teachers and interview schedules for parents were data collection instruments. Validity and reliability was established during the pilot study in two schools, where a Cronbach’s alpha of 0.8 was obtained to check the consistency of results. Data was analyzed using frequencies, descriptive statistics and chi-square tests to show the association (p<0.05 at 95 % confidence level) and their effect on outcome variables. Results show that parental level of education and income had positive association with their level of participation in pre-schools. Parents with higher level of education have relative higher level of parental participation in pre-schools. Parents’ occupation was however found to be unrelated to the level of parents’ participation in their children’s preschool education. The study concluded that education, occupation and income of parents have influence on their participation in preschool education of their children. Enhancing education levels, increasing income levels and creating employment opportunities for parents will boost their level of participation in preschool education of their children. Further research, a more specific study needs to be carried out focusing on other factors such as childhood nutrition, primary health care, gender mainstreaming, forceful migration relate to preschool education in Kayole and other places in Kenya.