A study of services received by primary school mathematics teachers from the teachers advisory center in Mutuini educational zone Machakos district, Kenya
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The Republic of Kenya achieved her Independence from Britain in 1963. According to Mc Cormich (1989, P28), Kenya covers a geographical area estimated at 582,646sq km. The Country's population as of 1989 was approximately 22,400,000. For the purpose of Educational Management, Kenya is divided into provinces, which are split into districts and then into divisions. The divisions are further divided into Educational zones and then into sub-zones. In all, there are 8 provinces and 46 districts. Machakos district is in the Eastern province of Kenya. The province consists of 6 districts including: - - Meru District - Machakos District - Embu District - Kitui District - Isiolo District - Marsabit District The Machakos district comprises of the following divisions: - - Central Division - Yatta Division - Kangundo Division - Mwala Division - Kathiani Division - Mbooni Division - Kilome Division - Makueni Division - Kibwezi Division - Masinga Division Central division alone has 4 Educational Zones, which include: - - Mumbuni Zone - Muputi Zone - Mutituni Zone - Central Zone Each of the zones has a Teachers Advisory Centre (T.A.C.). Whilst an Educational zone is under the direct supervision of an Assistant primary schools inspector (APSI), the TAC is under the charge of a TAC tutor. This study was conducted in Mutituni educational zone, Machakos district. It determines the services received by primary schools mathematics teachers from the zone's TAC. In the introductory part, it has been noted that the establishment of TACs in Kenya was initiated in 1963. The development plan of 1963 contained the establishment of TACs under the inspectorate section of the Ministry of education. Every district was projected to have at least one TAC, with the larger districts having two by 1969. The establishment of TACs was made a reality in 1970 through a collaborative effort between the Ministry of Education and UNICEF/UNESCO. At the time of inception of TACs, the Government's objectives were clearly stated and therefore both their roles and the duties of TAC Tutors were explicitly stated. Five of the functions of TACs as evidenced in the objectives of this study were sought to be verified with regard to Mutituni Educational zone's TAC during the present study. Inorder to elicit information towards that end, a questionnaire for teachers, having mathematics teachers of standards 1,3,5 and 7 as respondents, and an interview schedule intended to be administered to the TAC tutor of Mutituni Educational Zone were constructed by the researcher. The number of teachers involved in the study was 38 out of a total of 96 mathematics teachers of standards 1,3,5 and 7. The two instruments have been validated by administering the questionnaire to 14 respondents. The interview schedule was administered to one TAC tutor. The 14 teachers and the TAC tutor had been selected from the same division as those to be used in the main study. However, they have not been used as part of the sample for this study. Depending on their responses, the items of the two instruments have been altered nad corrected to augment their reliability. During administration of the instruments, the questionnaires were delivered by the researcher to 8 primary schools out of 16, which were randomly selected from the Educational Zone. The interview was given by the researcher himself. In case of the questionnaires, the respondents had been allowed one week in which to answer the various questions. After the lapse of the one-week, the researcher personally collected the completed questionnaires from the respective heads of schools. For the purpose of data analysis, information arising from both the questionnaire and the interview schedule was tabulated. Appropriate percentages were worked out. Thus, in the analysis of data, both frequency tables and percentages have been employed to enable presentation of results of the study. This approach is intended to facilitate the ease of comparing the arising pieces of information. After the information was tabulated and percentages worked out, an interpretation of the data was undertaken. Suggestions based on the results were therefore advanced and conclusion arrived at. It, infact, emerged that the TAC at Mutituni Educational Zone is both poorly equipped and staffed. The economic value of the TAC can be rated as being low and hence the utility of this facility as concerns the instruction of mathematics is low.