Factors Influencing Choice of Teacher Supervisory Approaches Employed by Headteachers in Public Secondary Schools in Nyeri South District, Nyeri County, Kenya
Since the declaration of Education for All (EFA) in Jomtien (Thailand) in 1990, quality education has been high in the agenda of the international community. This has created the need to improve the quality of education in many developed and developing countries. In response to international commitments to EFA goals, the Government of the Republic of Kenya is committed to improving the quality of education in secondary schools. For example, the Kenya Education Staff Institute (KESI) on its part is strengthening capacities of education managers through in-service training to improve school governance for increased productivity. In spite of the Headteachers executing teacher supervisory role in their schools, and in addition to the schools having well qualified pupils from primary schools, adequate teaching/learning resources and supportive parents and stakeholders, academic performance of the public secondary schools in some selected secondary schools have been below average. This study therefore sought to establish factors influencing the choice of teacher supervisory approaches employed by headteachers in public secondary schools in Nyeri South District. The objectives of the study will be to: determine the prevailing teacher supervisory approach employed by Headteachers in public secondary schools in Nyeri South District; establish Headteachers‟ characteristics influencing the choice of supervisory approach; establish in-school factors influencing teacher supervisory approach employed by Headteachers in public secondary schools; and establish measures that can be put in place to improve teacher supervision in public secondary schools in Nyeri South District. The findings of the study may help the head teachers to evaluate their supervisory practices and make the necessary modifications so as to enhance education outcomes. The findings may also provide the Ministry of Education with information on the status of teacher supervision in public secondary schools and hence stimulate necessary adjustments in supervisory programmes to improve the quality of education. The study will be guided by McGregor‟s (1960) Theory. The study used descriptive survey design targeting all the 33 headteachers and teachers in all the public secondary schools in Nyeri South District. Stratified sampling was used to select 15 schools; each strata representing provincial and district schools. Purposive sampling was used to select 15 headteachers from the sampled schools. A questionnaire designed for the headteachers and another one for teachers were used as the main tools for data collection. Prior to the actual data collection procedure, a pilot study was carried out to pre-test the data collection procedure. The researcher sought the assistance of research experts, experienced graduates, lecturers and experienced supervisors in order to help improve validity of the instrument. Cronbach‟s coefficient Alpha technique was used for measuring reliability. The study revealed that majority (73.3%) of the teachers rated headteachers supervisory practices as bureaucratic whereas headteachers (93.3%) rated themselves as both bureaucratic and professional. Regarding professional qualifications, it emerged that the choice of teachers‟ supervisory approaches among headteachers did not differ across their professional qualifications at p<0.05. Specifically, the study established that 54.5% of headteachers with Bachelor‟s qualifications and 50.0% of headteachers with Master‟s qualifications used a combination of professional and bureaucratic supervision. The study established that choice of teacher supervisory approaches statistically differed across school sponsorship at p<0.05, whereby headteachers from Government sponsored schools tended to use bureaucratic approach more while those from church-sponsored schools used combined approaches. The study recommends that: school management bodies should hold discussion with the teachers on curriculum delivery and supervision; the government through Ministry of Education should encourage professional development by providing funding which would help teachers in attending in-service courses; Headteachers should hold regular meeting with teachers to enhance trust and create conducive environment for mutual learning.; among other recommendations.