Effects of cost-sharing on secondary education for children from high-income and low-income communities: a comparative study of Westlands and Eastlands areas of Nairobi
Irungu, Ishmael Munene
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The purpose of this study was two-fold. The first was to document the success of cost sharing strategy in the provision of facilities for the 8-4-4-education system amongst secondary schools respectively drawn from the high-income and low-income areas of Westlands and Eastlands in Nairobi. The second was to document the alternative innovative ways of raising revenue and resources employed by committees for schools in these localities. The study employed the following procedure: Mathare and Kamukunji constituencies were selected to represent the Eastlands area while Westlands and Langata constituencies represented the Westlands area. All the provincial secondary schools in these areas were used for the study. Two data gathering instruments were used for data collection. The first was a head teacher’s questionnaire and the second instrument was the researcher's observational schedule. The main statistical technique used for data analysis was basic descriptive statistics. The findings revealed that Westlands schools were more advantaged in terms of availability of physical facilities than their Eastlands counterparts. They also had a better availability of educational materials and their candidates performed better in the 1989 K.C.S.E examination than was case in Eastlands schools. However, with regard to the provision of auxiliary services, no major differences were discernible between schools in both locations. In respect to alternative ways of financing education, there was a greater financial input by communities towards Westlands schools than was the case in Eastlands schools. Within the limitations of the study, the results provided a basis for making conclusions of the findings within the wider context of educational development and provision. The conclusions were discussed in the light of the equity of 8-4-4 education and equality in school quality. Finally the policy recommendations made included a review of cost-sharing implementation strategy in order to favour recently started schools to serve the disadvantaged children or those in low income areas guided by the principle of positive discrimination. Mobilisation of additional resources for educational development and their equitable disbursement in order to create fiscal neutrality and stability in educational finance was also recommended.