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Are parents in Kenya engaged in schools?

In December 2016, Twaweza East Africa commissioned Ipsos Kenya to gather feedback on a number of our areas of work, through a nationally representative “omnibus” survey. The survey consists of face to face interviews with randomly selected respondents, aged 18 or over, using a semi-structured questionnaire administered through smart phones. A sample size of 2,057 interviews was achieved with a margin of error +/-2% at 95% confidence interval. This sample was distributed evenly based on the estimated population size, and is also representative of the rural/urban clustering.

In this brief, we summarize the findings that relate to the twin issues of teacher and pupil absenteeism (both significantly related to learning time and learning outcomes), as well as to parental and community involvement in education. These results are particularly relevant to Twaweza’s “Public Agency” initiative, which aims to catalyze involvement by parents as well as teachers and school administrators to improve teacher and pupil presence in classrooms.   

Key Findings: 

  • Only 3 out of 10 Kenyans with children in primary school are interested in following up on whether teachers are present or absent in school.
  • 3 in 10 Kenyans think teachers and head teachers are frequently absent from school/do not come to school as expected of them.
  • About 7 out of 10 Kenyans say teachers frequently give exercise to pupils and regularly mark the work.
  • Only 3 out of 10 feel teachers are paid enough to sustain their livelihoods.
  • Lack of school levies and poverty are the main causes of pupil absenteeism in Kenya.
  • Only 3 out of 10 Kenyans have attended a public meeting in the past one year.
  • Only 25% of Kenyans have attended a forum where education was discussed in the last one year.

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Read more: basic education in Kenya learning

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Organizations: Twaweza East Africa

Pages: 10

Type: Policy brief

Year: 2017

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