Educational and career expectations of form three girls at Nyabururu and Kereri schools in Kisii district
The study set out to explore the educational and career aspirations of Form Three girls in two secondary schools in Kisii District and to attempt to describe the home background and the school setting of the students. The study also examined the role played by the parents and teachers in creating career awareness. An attempt was made to find out the perceptions of the parents and teachers on students' educational and career expectations. A total of two hundred and thirty-two students, twenty-four teachers (headteachers inclusive) and six parents participated in this study. Four types of research instruments were used; observation guides, questionnaires, interview guides and official records. Observation guide was used in a non-participant form in and outside classrooms. Questionnaires were used to get demographic data from the Form Three students. Interviews were administered to twenty students, twenty-four teachers and six parents so as to obtain information on students' educational and career aspirations. Official records were used so as to obtain the history of the schools and to analyze the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examination results for the years 1989 and 1990. Analysis of the data was presented in form of simple tables, actual words of the informants and brief discussions. From students' educational aspirations, it was found that most students preferred post-secondary education to direct employment. In the pursuit of further education (at university and middle colleges), most students preferred to study art subjects to sciences. However, on students' career aspirations, most students aspired for science-oriented careers. Gendertyping of subject choice appeared to guide most students in the pursuit for further education unlike it did on career preference. It was concluded that the girls were aware of their educational and career aspirations in spite of the schools not creating the awareness among students. The schools were found to be examination-oriented judging school success by performance in national examinations. On the basis of the collected data, it was generally recommended that the Ministry of Education should ensure that teachers are well trained to nurture students' aspirations besides the formal teaching in schools. There is also a need to design a more gender sensitive curriculum so as to minimize gendertyping tendencies among girls.