A study of the roles played by deputy head teachers in ensuring discipline in selected secondary schools in East Wanga Division of Mumias District, Western Province, Kenya
Kanga, James Philip
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The purpose of this study was to investigate the administrative roles played by deputy head teachers in secondary schools and the challenges they face in the course of their work. This was carried out in selected secondary schools in East Wanga Division, Mumias District. The study was confined to two factors: To investigate how deputy head teachers carry out their administrative roles and to investigate how they adjust themselves to the challenges that arise in the course of their work. The research was restricted to one division of Mumias district in Western Province, Kenya. The objectives of the study were to assess the deputy head teachers' attitude towards the duties that they are assigned, to determine the training they have undertaken in preparation to carry out their duties, the resources available to them and the influence of stakeholders towards carrying out duties effectively. The sample was made up of 20 deputy head teachers (i.e. 80.0% of the deputy head teacher population). The researcher used simple random sampling technique to pick the subjects to be interviewed. This is because it gives the entire population an equal chance to participate in the study, (Kerlinger, 1976).The following instruments were used to collect data; questionnaire, oral interview for all the subjects and an observation schedule. The validity of the research instruments was established by seeking the opinion of experts in the field of study as well as through pilot-testing on one member of each group of respondents who were not included in the final study. To determine reliability of the instruments, the researcher used test-retest or coefficient of stability technique to estimate the degree to which the same results could be obtained with a repeated measure of accuracy of the same concept. The data was collected by the researcher by visiting schools in the selected region then he analyzed it by use of descriptive and inferential statistics. The researcher used the measures of central tendency and variability from which conclusions and recommendations were made. The study found out that maintaining discipline (100%), time tabling and supervision of the implementation of the curriculum (75%), chairing the procurement committee (50%) and attending BOG meetings and attending to visitors (25%) were the major roles played by deputy headteachers. Majority (85%) of the deputy head teachers concurred that they had adequate authority to carry out their duties. Sixty percent (60%) commented that they were involved in major decision making in their respective schools and they were allowed to make independent decision's. Most deputy head teachers do not view themselves as administrators (29.4%). Deputy head teachers held other leadership roles before they were appointed as they cited holding positions of head of department (100%), Coach (50%), Boarding mistress (50%), Games master (25%), Counselor (25%) and class teacher (25%). Majority (87.5%) of the deputy head teachers were not given orientation. 64.3% of the deputy head teachers had not attended any in-service training. 35.7% were trained on: Tendering, duties of deputy head teacher, budgeting, administration, discipline, management and team building. The following are the challenges with their respective proportions: Getting time to teach (75%), Parental interference (75%), Overruling of decisions by head teacher (50%), Lack of unity (50%), Uncooperative parents (25%), Disciplining students and upholding the children's act (25%) and indiscipline from teachers and subordinate staff (25%). In conclusion deputy head teachers perceived themselves as custodians of discipline in the school and overseers of the implementation of the curriculum. They had adequate authority to carry out their duties and were not being interfered with. They were also involved in major decision making in their respective schools and they were allowed to make independent decisions.Most deputy head teachers did not view themselves as administrators but rather as teachers with added responsibilities. A large proportion of the deputy head teachers had not attended any training to facilitate the carrying out of their duties this made them to be ill equipped to carry out the new responsibilities as deputy head teachers. They had access to the visitors' book, school log book, correspondence from TSC, inspectorate report and correspondence from DEO. Access to staff confidential files and accounting documents was not availed to most of them. The recommendations of the study were: Deputy Head teachers should be given a conducive working environment by the stakeholders in the school environment. Measures should be put in place to bolster cooperation between deputy head teachers and head teachers in secondary schools. Deputy Head teachers should be given relevant training before they take up their appointments and they should get adequate orientation. Resources that deputy head teachers need should be availed to them so as to carry out their duties effectively. Parents need to be given advice to be working together with deputy head teachers to achieve success for the school not to be antagonistic especially with regard to ensuring proper conduct of students.
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