Administrative challenges facing primary school headteachers in Kamwangi division, Thika District, Kenya
Waweru, Jacinta Njeri
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The main concern of the researcher in this study was to find out the Administrative challenges facing primary school head teachers in Kamwangi Division, Thika District, Kenya. The purpose of this study was to identify the challenges facing primary school head teachers in the six administrative task areas: - • Curriculum and institution. • Finance and business administration. • Physical facilities. • Pupil personnel and • School - community relations. It also sought to establish ways in which they responded to the challenges and also offer possible suggestions for combating the same. A review of literature on challenges facing the head teachers in the six administrative task areas, curriculum, finance, physical facilities, staff personnel, pupil personnel and the schoolcommunity relations was done. The study used three research instruments, a Head Teachers' Questionnaire (HTQ, an Obseryation Schedule (OS) of the sample schools and an Interview Schedule (IS) administered to the AEO and ZIS were used to counter check the data given by the head teachers in the questionnaires. The main instrument used was the questionnaire made up of two major sections with questions seeking to elicit general administrative information of the sample population. The second section of the questionnaire was sub-divided into six sub-sections based on each of the six administrative areas. The sample population was selected by Stratified Sampling from a population of forty five (45) schools / head teachers at least five from each of the three zones - Chania, Githobokoni and Mang'u in Kamwangi Division, Thika District. Eighteen (18) out of 45 head teachers responded fully to the HTQ - the zonal distribution of the head teachers was 5 from Chania,6 from Githobokoni and 7 from Mangu. The sample was therefore 40% of the research population The data collected from the head teachers was supplemented and counter checked using the observation schedule for schools and the interview schedule for the AEO/ZIS. The A.E.O. and the Githobokoni and Mangu ZIS. Total responses from the eighteen head teachers /schools supplemented /counter-checked against the AEOs and ZIS reports were analysed using statistical package for social sciences (SPSS) computer programme. The findings were presented in tables, frequencies and percentages and discussions. There were several challenges facing primary school head teachers in Kamwangi division in all the six administrative areas, curriculum, finance, physical facilities, staff and students' personnel and the school-community relations management. The intensity of the challenges however depended on the head teacher's competence, skills and knowledge and other factors like the school committees and the socio-economic status of the school's catchments community. The most common included: • Lack of adequate knowledge and skills in financial management • Overloaded weekly teaching load going up to even forty (40) lessons • Un co-operative and hostile school communities • Lack of adequate equipment and resources for teaching and learning • Unresourceful school committees The above challenges would be more manageable if some of the recommendations below were implemented. • Constant and continuous on-the-job training for head teachers in school administration. This should also be extended to educational managers at all the levels of the national education system besides the primary school head teachers. • Creating awareness in all the educational stakeholders e.g. the schools community, sponsors, teachers, parents and both the public and private sectors about the need to make their significant contributions towards education of their children in order to supplement the government efforts in the provision of the same. • Employment of more teachers to lighten not only the head teachers weekly teaching load but also that of all the teachers for better quality education. • Employment of office staff e.g. secretaries and accounts clerks to create more time for the head teachers as curriculum supervisors and school managers. • TSC appointment of head teachers through interviews and on merit.