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Free primary education funding as a predictor of dropout rate in public primary schools in Kenya: a case study of emuhaya sub county

Author: 
Joash Mark Olenja, Enose M.W. Simatwa and Maurice A. Ndolo
Subject Area: 
Social Sciences and Humanities
Abstract: 

Globally, countries have made major strides in education in increasing enrolment to achieve Universal Primary Education. In Kenya, the Government reintroduced Free Primary Education in 2003 to enhance access, retention, participation, progression and completion. In 2002 dropout rates in Vihiga, Sabatia, Emuhaya and Hamisi Sub Counties were 1.8%, 1.6%, 2.5% and 1.4% respectively. In 2007, out of 7,967 pupils admitted in class I only 4,097 completed class 8 in 2014. This means that 48.83% of the pupils had dropped out. In Emuhaya dropout rates were high before introduction of Free Primary Education funding and even after introduction of Free Primary Education funding the dropout rates experienced were still generally high. The objective of this study was to determine the extent to which Free Primary Education funding can predict dropout rate in public primary schools in Kenya. The study established that there was a strong negative relationship between Free Primary Education policy and dropout rates with coefficient of -0.743 which was significant at p value of 0.05 (r= -0.743, N=65, p <.05). It accounted for 54.4% of the variation in dropout rates. This means that increase in Free Primary Education funding reduced dropout rate by 54.4%. The study concluded that Free Primary Education policy had reduced dropout of pupils in public primary schools in Emuhaya Sub County. The study recommended that Free Primary Education fund be disbursed on time to schools.

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