The challenges facing the sponsors in the management of public secondary schools: the case of Kibwezi district, Eastern province Kenya.
Mwanthi, Kanini Patricia
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This study investigated the challenges facing the church sponsors, in the management of public secondary schools in Kibwezi District, Kenya. The study was guided by five research questions namely; the role expectation of the church sponsor and the school management, the types and cause of conflicts between the sponsor and the school management, the challenges facing the church sponsor in the management of the schools they sponsor, the effects of the conflicts on the management of schools and the measures to be put in place to improve the relationship between the church sponsor and the school management. The study used descriptive and naturalistic designs. The literature review was discussed focusing on: Structural functionalism theory, the development of education in Kenya, the role of the sponsor in the management of secondary schools in Kenya, and the challenges facing the church sponsors in the management of public secondary schools. The study used a sample of 15 schools out of a total population of 30 schools, 15 BOG members, 15 head teacher, 3 sponsor representatives and 3 AEOs, and 1 DEO. The study used questionnaires, interview guides and document analysis to collect data. The quantitative information was summarized into frequencies and percentages. Narrative and interpretive reports and citation were written down to depict the situation as it is on the ground. All data was strictly interpreted in relation to the research questions and conclusions were drawn from the findings. The study found that the role expectations of sponsors are clearly stated in the Education Act although the fact that the sponsors claim a greater role in school management raises conflicts. The sponsors therefore involved themselves in school management in other ways other than those stipulated in the Education Act through, for instance; educating the needy students, mobilizing the community for funds and providing guidance and counseling to teachers and students. The study also revealed that although the sponsors are in a cordial relationship with the other stakeholders there are conflicts faced but these are amicably solved. Among the main causes of conflict were lack of consultation, inability of the BOGs to manage schools and the need to maintain church traditions in schools. It was concluded that these conflicts must .be resolved by having clear cut roles, consultations and allowing, sponsors greater say in appointment of head teachers and BOG chairpersons. The church sponsors faced challenges in the management of secondary schools. The challenges included: lack of clear cut roles, low level of education of sponsor representative, inadequate facilities and political appointment of heads. It was concluded that these challenges affected school management by registering poor performance in schools which is characterized by indiscipline and lack of development among others. The study further concluded that among the new measures to be put in place to improve sponsor management of public schools are: giving them a greater say in appointing heads and BOG chairperson, revising the public school governance among other roles.