Challenges facing performance of English among public Secondary school students in Nyatike sub-county, Migori County
Onyando, Victor Ochieng
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In Kenya, English is a very crucial language. For a long time English has been the sole official language in the country, but after the promulgation of the new constitution in 2010, Kiswahili was accorded the status of an official language too. English is a compulsory subject in both primary and secondary school education. Proficiency in English is very critical for a student who wishes to compete favorably with other learners in the country for prestigious careers and consequently jobs. In the recent past, the performance of English has been very dismal and this has prompted more questions than answers. The purpose of this study was to establish the challenges facing performance of English among public secondary school students in Nyatike sub-county in Migori County. The study was guided by the following objectives: to find out how inability to read among students is a challenge facing performance of English among secondary students in Nyatike sub-county, Migori County, to establish the extent to which mother tongue influence is a challenge facing performance of English among secondary students in Nyatike sub-county, Migori County, to determine how lack of enough teachers of English is a challenge facing performance of English among secondary students in Nyatike sub-county, Migori County and to find out how lack of enough teaching and learning materials is a challenge facing performance of English among secondary students in Nyatike sub-county, Migori County. Descriptive survey research design was used for the study. There are 25 public secondary schools in Nyatike sub-county. Twenty of them were sampled for the study. The study targeted teachers of English and the students of form threes and fours. Random sampling technique was used to sample students for the study while purposive sampling technique was used to sample English teachers. A total of 6 respondents were sampled from each school (constituting 5 students and 1 English teacher). A total of 120 respondents were targeted for the study (constituting 100 students and 20 teachers of English). Questionnaires were used by the researcher as instruments for data collection. Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) was used to analyze the data. Descriptive statistics such as frequencies and percentages were used to summarize the data. The analyzed data was presented in form of tables, pie-charts and bar-graphs where applicable. The study found that lack of teachers of English was a major challenge facing the performance of English among public secondary students. This was supported by 84% of the respondents who indicated that there was a serious shortage of teachers of English in most schools. The iistudy also found that lack of teaching and learning resources was also a serious challenge facing English performance among public secondary students as was indicated by 76%. From the findings, it was concluded that lack of teachers of English and lack of teaching and learning resources are indeed challenges facing the performance of English among public secondary students and are contributing greatly to their poor performance. The study recommended that the government should play its role by employing more teachers and availing more funds to schools to purchase teaching and learning resources. The study finally recommends that another study be done in other districts to establish the measures taken to improve performance of English among students in public secondary schools.
- School of Education