AN ASSESSMENT OF THE FACTORS AFFECTING SECONDARY SCHOOL ADMINISTRATION IN KENYA
1.1 Background to the Study
Education involves providing guidance and instruction tailored to impart knowledge to children and young individuals within educational institutions such as schools and colleges (Cowie, 2016). It functions as a societal tool, steering a nation's destiny and shaping its future prospects (Panda, 2018). However, education is not solely focused on perpetuating cultural traditions; it also aims to facilitate a peaceful and rational transformation of the foundational aspects of civilization (Pervaiz et al., 2015).
The educational process entails the transmission of knowledge from one individual or section of society to another individual or section. Furthermore, the traditional objective of education in every country is to transmit its culture, preserve the past and present, and foster intellectual development (Farooq, 2015). According to Khalid (2018), education should contribute to enhancing the capabilities and skills of students while introducing new ideas and values to them.
Conceptually, school administration refers to the process of managing and overseeing the operations, policies, and activities within an educational institution. According to Mamji(2019), it involves a range of responsibilities related to the organization, coordination, and supervision of various aspects of the school, ensuring its smooth functioning and effective delivery of education. However, school administration in Kenya involves a hierarchical structure with key roles such as the principal, deputy principal, and heads of departments overseeing the academic and operational aspects of the institution. The principal provides strategic leadership, ensuring the effective implementation of government policies and overseeing financial management.
Similarly, teachers play a vital role in delivering lessons and supporting students' development, while administrative staff contribute to the day-to-day running of the school. The guidance and counseling department addresses students' academic and personal needs, and the discipline committee maintains a conducive learning environment by enforcing school rules. The Board of Governors and Parent-Teacher Association provide governance and community involvement, contributing to the overall success of school administration in Kenya.
According to Leithwood and Seashore (2018), principals play a crucial role in various key functions, including shaping a vision for academic success, creating an education-friendly climate, fostering leadership in others, enhancing instruction, and managing personnel and data processes to drive school improvement. The improvement of school leadership has become a top priority in educational reforms, with a 2010 survey by the Wallace Foundation identifying principals' leadership as one of the most urgent issues in public school education.
Despite the existence of diverse leadership patterns among principals, assistant principals, teachers, and parents in any school, the principal remains the primary source of leadership influence (Andrews, 2008). He emphasized that effective principals are tasked with establishing a school-wide commitment to high standards and the success of all students. While traditional views portrayed public school principals as mere managers, recent decades have witnessed a shift toward recognizing high standards as essential for all students, not just those bound for college success. According to Andrews, setting clear public standards and fostering high expectations for all students, beginning with the administration articulating these standards, is key to narrowing the achievement gap between advantaged and less advantaged students and elevating overall student achievement.
Anderson and Seashore (2015) further contended that an effective principal ensures that the concept of academic success for all permeates the faculty, forming the basis for a school-wide learning improvement agenda focused on student progress goals. Therefore, a survey will be conducted in order to assess the factors affecting secondary school administration in Kenya.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Teachers as well as administrative staff in a school play a pivotal role in shaping the educational experiences and outcomes of young learners. In Kenya, as in numerous African countries, the evaluation of a student's competence and the selection for educational progression and employment opportunities have historically relied on examination performance. Disparities in examination results among students at various education levels have been evident over time, with some excelling while others struggle. In Kenya specifically, success in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) is pivotal for accessing higher education institutions and ultimately securing employment, making it a crucial aspect of educational benefit. The persistent discrepancies in academic achievement in Kenya have become a significant cause for concern among students, teachers, and other stakeholders in the education sector. It is in the light of these that the study seeks to assess the factors affecting secondary school administration in Kenya.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The main purpose of this study is to assess the factors affecting secondary school administration in Kenya. Specifically, the study will;
Determine the extent ineffective implementation of government policies affects secondary school administration in Kenya.
Determine the extent financial constraints affects secondary school administration in Kenya
Determine the extent inadequate school infrastructure affects secondary school administration.
Determine the extent poor human resources management affects secondary school administration in Kenya
1.4 Research Questions
The following questions have been prepared for the study:
To what extent does the ineffective implementation of government policies impact secondary school administration in Kenya?
To what extent do financial constraints affect secondary school administration in Kenya?
To what extent does inadequate school infrastructure affect secondary school administration in Kenya?
To what extent does poor human resources management affect secondary school administration in Kenya?
1.5 Significant of the Study
Stakeholders involved in education policies and school management can utilize the study's insights to enhance leadership practices and create a positive relationship with teachers. Also, inform them about the resources needed to support teachers effectively. Furthermore, it will assisting in alleviating dissatisfaction among teachers and enhancing their morale will lead to increased commitment to their profession. Additionally, subsequent researchers will use it as a literature review. This means that other students who may decide to conduct studies in this area will have the opportunity to use this study as available literature that can be subjected to critical review. Invariably, the result of the study contributes immensely to the body of academic knowledge with regard to an assessment of the factors affecting secondary school administration in Kenya.
1.6 Scope of the study
The scope of this study is boarded on an assessment of the factors affecting secondary school administration in Kenya. Theoretically, this study will determine the extent ineffective implementation of government policies affects secondary school administration in Kenya, determine the extent financial constraints affects secondary school administration in Kenya, the extent inadequate school infrastructure affects secondary school administration and determine the extent poor human resources management affects secondary school administration in Kenya. Geographically, the study will be delimited to staff in some selected secondary schools, Kenya .
1.7Operational Definition of Terms
Secondary School Education: In Nigeria, children start attending primary schools (elementary schools) when they are 6 years old and spend the next six years there, graduating at the age of 12.