Drug and substance abuse in secondary schools and implications for student discipline: a case of Embu district Kenya
Kinyua, Esther W.
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A lot of research work and investigation have revealed the prevalence of drug and substance abuse in most of our secondary schools in Kenya. The vice is currently a topic that has continued to generate a lot of interest to the government, educationalist and other stakeholders. The consumption of drugs and other related substances was practiced in Africa traditional societies which was done with the set rules and regulations that governed the production and supply of these substances. Drugs and substances abuse has been blamed for mass indiscipline destructions of property and poor performance in curriculum among other implications. The primary purpose of this study was to investigate the implications of the use of drug and substance abuse in public secondary schools of Embu District. To realize the purpose of this study, a descriptive survey method was used. The primary data was collected by the use of Questionnaires which comprised both open ended and structured questions. The study targeted students, teacher -counselors and headteachers. The study sample comprised of 50 students, 5 teacher-counsellors and 5 head teachers from five secondary schools in Central Division of Embu District. The schools were selected using stratified random sampling. For analysis purposes, the statistical package for social science was used to analyse and process the data. Descriptive were used to analyse the data, included frequencies and percentages. The results of the data analysis were presented in frequency tables and bar charts The study established that drugs and substance abuse among secondary school students in Central Division of Embu District is on the increase. Among the student who took part in the study, 40% admitted that they were abusing various drugs, which is higher than the global proportion of 13.5% of the youth aged 15-24 who have tried drugs at least once as reported by UNODC (2000) This indicates that the efforts that the schools have been putting in place to fight drug and substance abuse have not been working, effectively. Consequently, drug and substance abuse has lead to increase in cases of indiscipline , as reflected through strikes , theft truancy , sneaking out of school, disobedience to teachers , don't care attitude among student and general indiscipline. On the overall, this has led to poor academic performance in the schools. Efforts need to be put in place to come up with more effective strategies of fighting against drug and substance abuse in secondary schools.