A Correlational Study of Socio-Economic Factors Affecting Student’s Access and Retention in Public Secondary Schools, Kitui County, Kenya
Kimanzi, Ann K.
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This study aimed at investigating the socio-economic factors influencing students‟ access and retention in secondary schools in Mwingi East sub-county. This is because in spite of the inception of subsidized secondary education, students „access and retention in secondary education in this area continues to be a challenge. The objectives which guided the study included to: assess how learning resources and physical facilities influence students‟ access and retention in secondary schools, find out how parents educational attainment influence access and retention of students in secondary schools, determine the influence of family income level and household family size on access and retention of students in secondary education in Mwingi East Kitui County. The targeted population was 24 school principals, 101 class teachers and 947 students in form 3 and form 4 in the Sub-County for the study. Stratified sampling and simple random sampling were the procedures of sampling adopted. The sample comprised of 8 public schools and the principals of the schools (35%), 20 class teachers (20%) and 160 students (17%). The data was collected using Questionnaire and interview schedules. This Study adopted correlation designe whereby Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS version 21) was used to analyse quantitative data. On the other hand, from the research objectives qualitative data was analysed accordingly as per the themes. The study found out that Physical facilities and learning resources did not have a significant influence on access and retention of students in secondary schools. It was further found out that the parental educational attainment, family income and the family size influenced access and retention of students in secondary education. The researcher recommends that the National and county governments should provide more budgetary allocation for bursaries to help the needy students in the payment of school fees. Family planning awareness campaigns should be carried out too apart from putting on relevant policies to govern family sizes based on individual‟s income.