Challenges faced by teachers in implementing HIV/AIDS curriculum in primary schools for pupils with hearing impairments in Rift Valley Province, Kenya
Mutai, Paul Kipkorir
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This study was designed to investigate the challenges the teachers who handle the hearing-impaired learners face in the process of teaching HIV/AIDS Education in primary schools in Rift-valley province of Kenya. The study was based on the view that HIV/AIDS is indeed a threat to all humanity, regardless of the physical or even mental condition. The study sought to determine the type and level of training the teachers undergo before handling this subject and the challenges they encounter in translating the AIDS education content into sign language to hearing impaired pupils. The study adopted the descriptive survey design. The research instruments used included the teachers' and pupils' questionnaires. Data collected was coded and entered in the statistical packages for social sciences (SPSS) programme. The descriptive statistics, that is, frequency distribution and percentages was used to describe and summarise the data in reference to such variables as age, gender, years of teaching and pupils' classes among others. Qualitative responses (data) were analysed using thematic approach, whereby each objective under the study was described in relation to the categories of responses given from the subjects. The results of the study indicated that majority of teacher respondents had acquired the certificate level of training in HIV/AIDS course, spending one week duration in undertaking the course. Majority of the respondents had also taught HIV/AIDS lessons for a period of three years. On the other hand, pupils' respondents indicated that they were 100% knowledgeable of HIV/AIDS and the teachers were their main source of knowledge. They knew that AIDS kills, and that AIDS is transmitted by both blood transfusion and sexual activities. Majority of teachers also indicated that there were fewer textbooks for HIV/AIDS, which hampered their efforts in disseminating Aids knowledge to learners. Nevertheless, female teachers use more books than their male counterparts, and more of books are used than posters and newspapers in dissemination of HIV/AIDS information to pupils. In addition, teachers indicated that abstract signs hinder them to effectively disseminate HIV/AIDS knowledge to pupils. In fact, more female teachers than males were puzzled by abstract signs in their teaching, while more men than female teachers experienced the same but in the case of difficult concepts. Majority of teachers were also of the view that more workshops should be conducted for them; while others were of the view that there was a need for more teaching learning materials. Recommendations were made for the government to expand provisions of training of HIV/AIDS in institutions up to degree level-higher education, so as to increase knowledge to teachers to aid their effective implementation of the HIV/AIDS curriculum. The government should also avail scholarships in this area to encourage further education and training of teachers of hearing impaired. In addition, the government and other organizations should provide seminars, workshops and conferences for more awareness on the part of teachers. Last but not least, teaching-learning materials should also be provided, including directives on conventional terminologies and signs to be used by teachers and pupils for effective implementation on the communication of HIV/AIDS curriculum in schools for hearing impaired. Further, research was recommended with regard to pupils' perception of risk sexual behaviours in schools for hearing impaired.