Headteachers' roles in enhancing pupils' performance in mathematics in public primary schools in Thika West District, Kiambu County, Kenya
Kimani, Lucy Wanjiku
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This study set out to establish head teachers , roles in enhancing pupils' performance in mathematics in public primary schools in Thika West District, Kiambu County, Despite the effort made by the government to provide teaching and learning resources, trained and qualified personnel to public primary schools poor performance in mathematics is still prevalent in most public primary schools. Specific objectives of the study aimed to find out: the role of headteachers in curriculum and instruction; the role of the headteachers in teacher and pupil personnel administration; and to determine the role played by the head teacher in the management of teaching and learning resources all aimed at enhancing pupils' performance in mathematics. The study used descriptive research design. The target population of the study was 127 public primary schools in Thika West District, Kiambu County. The study sample size was 22 head teachers and 22 mathematics teachers. Purposive sampling technique was used to select head teachers and teachers. The questionnaires were used to collect data from headteachers, teachers and pupils. The questionnaires were validated by input from research experts. Reliability was determined through split half method after being pre-tested in one purposively selected school. Data analysis was performed using SPSS. Descriptive statistics such as mode, frequency and percentages were used to analyze quantitative data. Content analysis was applied in the analysis of qualitative data. The researcher has presented the data using graphs, pie charts and tables. The study established that teachers did not complete the syllabus in time, there lacked sufficient supervision of teachers' .work by the headteachers, majority of the teachers were incompetent, teachers did not use a variety of learning materials, equipments and display items in the classroom while teaching, pupils' participation in co-curricular activities and in remedial classes positively affected their performance in mathematics and majority of the schools lacked necessary teaching and learning resources. Thus, the study concludes that headteachers played crucial roles in administration of curriculum and instruction, in teacher and student personnel management and in the administration of the school's teaching and learning resources. The study recommends that the Ministry of Education should train head teachers on the national education policies touching on curriculum implementation to ensure their effective execution of the curriculum programmes. The head teachers should work together with the Ministry of Education to ensure that staff are inducted and retrained to acquire relevant skills, attitudes, values and abilities. Further, the head teachers should adopt a collaborative leadership style that allows the participation of teachers in decision making. The head teachers in their role of administration of student personnel should devise a comprehensive integrated system that encompasses effective students learning, an open door policy which is students oriented, students' participation in co-curricular activities and delegation of some administration tasks to the students. The government should allocate more financial resources to the education sector in order to ensure that all public primary schools have all the necessary teaching and learning resources.