Relationship between principals’ instructional leadership and students’ academic achievement in Kenya certificate of secondary education in Meru and Tharaka-Nithi Counties
Nkoroi, Muthoni Purity
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The purpose of this study was to establish the relationship between principals’ instructional leadership and students‟ achievement in KCSE in Meru and Tharaka-Nithi Counties. The main objectives of this study were to; establish the relationship between principals‟ instructional supervision approaches and students‟ academic achievement; determine the relationship between principals‟ support of staff professional development and students‟ academic achievement; examine the relationship between principals‟ acquisition and allocation of teaching and learning resources and students‟ academic achievement and investigate the relationship between principals monitoring of students‟ progress and academic achievement. This study was based on Carrier’s Instructional Leadership Model. The study adopted a correlation research design. The study involved principals, teachers and Quality Assurance and Standards Officers. The target population was 3955 subjects which included; 445 principals, 3501 teachers and nine QASOs. A sample of 404 respondents was selected to participate in the study. The researcher used stratified sampling to select schools while simple random sampling to get a sample of 45 principals was used, simple random sampling was also used to select 350 teachers while all the nine Quality Assurance and Standards Officers took part in the study. The data for this study were collected using questionnaires for principals and teachers and interview guides for Quality Assurance and Standards Officers. Research instruments were pre-tested during a pilot study on one principal, four teachers and one QASO not participating in the study since principals in those schools were instructional leaders and the schools were in relatively similar categories in terms of students „achievement as those in the main study. Pearson Moment Correlation Coefficient was used to analyse quantitative data. Qualitative data was analysed using content analysis. Validity of the research instruments was ensured through the expertise of University supervisors while reliability was estimated using Cronbach’s alpha formula. The study established that there was no significant relationship between principals‟ supervision approaches of instructional programmes, while in a significant relationship between staff professional development and students‟ academic achievement was established. A significant relationship between acquisition and allocation of teaching and learning resources and students‟ academic achievement was also established. However, there was no significant relationship between principals‟ monitoring of learners‟ progress and academic achievement established. Based on the study findings, the researcher recommends that principals should repeatedly engage in instructional leadership with emphasis on staff professional development and acquisition and allocation of both teaching and learning resources. The study will contribute to instructional leadership literature with prospects aimed at improving teaching and learning for better students‟ academic achievement in Kenya.