A study of pupils indiscipline faced by primary school teachers in a Nairobi slum area: the case of Mathare primary school
Rwamba, Ireri Esther
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The main purpose of this project is to investigate indiscipline related problems faced by primary school teachers in Mathare Slum area, their causes, methods of dealing with the problems and whether the teachers face any constraints in their efforts to maintain discipline in the school. Special focus is given to the Headteacher, since he is the overall administrator, who supports and encourages good school discipline, conducive to effective teaching and learning. The study was done in (10) ten primary schools of Mathare Division in Nairobi District. It involved forty (40) teachers and ten (10) Headteachers. The tool used was questionnaire for the Headteachers and for the teachers. The questionnaire were given and collected personally by the researcher. The findings arrived at after conducting the study are given below: 1. The teachers (respondents) considered behaviour problems that directly affected academic performance as more serious, than those affecting character. Most common problems were absenteeism, lateness and poor academic performance. 2. Family background of the pupils was seen as the major cause of indiscipline in Mathare slum schools. Such indiscipline problems were attributed to lack of facilities and poverty of the parents who leave children unattended to go to work very early and come home late. 3. To maintain discipline, the respondents used preventive methods more than punitive methods. These included use of rewards, praise and special favours to the child which helped in behaviour modification. 4. The Headteachers realised their important role in matters of discipline and did all they could to help the teachers in this difficult task. Most of the headteachers only helped where indiscipline was beyond the teachers jurisdiction like when caning or calling the child's parents to school. 5. Teachers face many constraints, the greatest being home background of the pupils and the immediate environment. Mathare was seen as a bad environment for pupils discipline in the schools due to influence related incidents and exposure to some behaviour not conducive to school work.