An assessment of the effectiveness of student council in conflict resolution in public secondary schools in Kamukunji sub-county, Kenya
One of the core activities of the Student Council is to solve student conflicts. Conflict mostly has a negative connotation, but in actual sense it can either be destructive or constructive. The Student Council has the mandate of managing conflicts involving the students and the school management to ensure that schools are safe, secure and conducive for learning. The study focused on assessing on the effectiveness of the Student Council in conflict resolution in secondary schools in Kamukunji Sub-County of Nairobi County, Kenya. The specific objectives were; to examine the capacity of the members of student council to handle conflicts in public secondary schools in Kamukunji Sub-County, to examine methods used by student council to resolve conflicts in public secondary schools in Kamukunji Sub-County, to establish the extent of participation of student council in conflict resolution in public secondary schools in Kamukunji Sub-County and examine the impact of participation of student council in conflicts resolution in public secondary schools in Kamukunji Sub-County. The study employed descriptive survey research design. Two theories, social change and functionalism guided this study. The study was conducted in Kamukunji Sub- County targeting all seven secondary schools. The target population were 129 members of the school council and 109 teachers who were directly involved with matters of the student council. A purposive sampling technique was used to select the members of the student council and teachers where 70 members of the student council and 42 teachers were selected as respondents. Self- administered questionnaires were used to collect primary data from the respondents. Piloting was conducted in Makadara Sub-County. The reliability of the research instruments was done using the split half technique. A correlation coefficient of 0.62 was obtained after subjecting pilot study results to Spearman–Brown coefficient analysis. Data collected from the field was be coded and entered into the computer for analysis using statistical package for social sciences version 22 for analysis. Descriptive statistics was used to analyse the data obtained. The result of the data analysis was presented using frequency tables and charts. The study found that the student council has limited conflict resolution skills due to short period of induction and lack of structured continuous skills development. The study established that although the members of student council lacked adequate conflict resolution skills they have managed to deal with these challenges and as result there is positive impact on the activities of the student council in dealing with conflict resolution. Due to the positive impact of the student council in can be concluded that to some extent the student council can be said to be effective. The study findings may help the school management to identify the challenges facing the student council and address them so as to make it more effective. The study recommends that the student council be trained to adequate skills necessary for conflict resolution on a continuous basis using a structured approach that will involve all the stakeholders and experts. The study also recommends that the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology ensures all policies concerning the Students Council are implemented.
- School of Education