Educational Research (ISSN:2141-5161) Vol. 3(1), pp. 017-029, January 2012         
Copyright © 2012 International Research Journals


Full Length Research Paper 

Differential Perceptions, Challenges, Conflicts and Tensions in the Role of Board of Governors (BOG) and Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) in Sub-Saharan Africa: A case of Kenyan Secondary Schools

1Henry Onderi and 2Andrew Makori

1Bondo University College, Kenya

2Reading Gap International, UK

*Corresponding Author E-mail:

Received 23 July, 2011; Accepted 19 January 2012


Parental involvement in schools as Parent Teacher Association (PTAs) and Board of Governors (BOGs) is now recognized as a widespread phenomenon. In many contexts they constitute part of the school governance structure. Their involvement and active support in teaching and learning is critical to sustained educational quality. Their support is a critical factor in the success of the school and their cooperation with teachers enhances pupils’ performance. Parental involvement in schools takes different kinds and forms or aspects. As key stakeholders in education, they are involved in mobilization of local resources, improving school management and strengthening local ownership. This article reports on the findings of a study conducted in the Gucha district of Kenya. The main focus of the study was on school governing bodies’ roles, issues and challenges. The study, a survey design comprising of heads (30), chairs of BOGs (30) and PTAs (30) set out to investigate the roles of BOGs and PTAs in the teaching and learning process. Thirty secondary schools which were purposively sampled were involved in the study. Data was collected from the heads and chairs of BOGs and PTAs through use of questionnaires whose response rate was 100%. The questionnaire format consisted of closed, open-ended and rating scale items. While BOGs and PTAs were considered part of the school leadership team, they perceived their respective roles differently and operated in an environment characterized by contradictions, challenges, tensions and conflicts which were attributed to role overlap and lack of clear guidelines. The study also identified lack of training and appropriate induction programme and induction pack as challenges that impeded the roles of the BOGs and PTAs. Also, a majority of the BOGs and PTAs lacked confidence in their roles.


Keywords: Parents Teachers Association (PTA), Board of Governors (BOG), Sub-Saharan Africa, Differential Perceptions, Role Conflicts.