An investigation of factors influencing indiscipline among students in public day secondary Schools in Makadara District, Nairobi County.
Okumu, Magrett Atieno
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It is without doubt that discipline is one of the major driving forces behind good performance of students in national examinations. Well disciplined students fit well in the society because education helps mould them into disciplined and responsible members of the society. Indiscipline in our educational institutions is age-old and public day schools too have not been left behind. Disruptive behavior is a concern to schools, parents and fellow students whose education may be adversely affected. Therefore, it has become necessary to get to the root of the causes of indiscipline in these schools by focusing on the learners physical environment in the home, community and at school. All these factors to a great extent influence the way learners behave. The purpose of this study was to examine major factors influencing indiscipline in public day secondary schools in Makadara district and to establish whether positive alternative approaches of enhancing discipline had taken root in these day schools to help curb indiscipline. The objectives of this study were to establish the nature of indiscipline experienced in public day secondary schools in Makadara district, investigate the major causes of indiscipline among students in public day secondary schools, asses the positive alternative measures being put in place to arrest indiscipline among the students and to seek suggestions on measures that could be taken to curb students’ indiscipline in Kenyan secondary schools. The study was conducted in all the 8 public day secondary schools in Makadara district, Kenya. It was guided by the social learning theory. The target population consisted of 1,108 subjects. The sample included 8 deputy head teachers, 16 class teachers, 8 teacher - counselors and 336 Form 2 students. The study employed descriptive survey design which was more suitable because it enabled the researcher to acquire information from a selected population and the sample findings were viewed as being a representation of the population as a whole. The samples were drawn using purposive, systematic and simple random sampling techniques. To ensure reliability and validity, a pilot study was carried out. The data was collected through questionnaires administered to teachers and students and an interview schedule for the deputy head teachers. The data was analyzed descriptively and organized in tables, frequencies, pie charts and percentages. The study indicated that most student disciplinary problems experienced were due to influence from the environment and their homes, namely, mobile phones, responsibilities at home, matatu menace and sheng’ – speaking. Additionally, the study indicated that indiscipline cases in Public day Secondary Schools in Makadara district were fuelled by inadequate guidance and counseling, less involvement of students in co-curricular activities, lack of school - based families, and indifference to LSE by both the teachers and students. The study concluded that in order to curb indiscipline in secondary schools, positive approaches need to be implemented fully, since such measures are most likely to yield much better results than the traditional scheme of discipline. The study recommended that school administrations should establish active mandatory school – based families and put in place intensive parent – mentoring programs which aim at sensitizing parents on their parental duties.