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Impact of free Secondary Education Policy on Primary to Secondary Education Transition Rate in Kenya: A case study of Mbita and Suba Sub- Counties

Abstract

Maurice Aoko Ndolo and Enose M.W Simatwa

Free Secondary Education policy was introduced in Kenya in 2008 with an aim of making secondary education affordable so as to enhance access, transition and student academic performance. Studies in some parts of Kenya like Kangundo Sub County have revealed that subsidized fees at all levels of education and particularly at primary and secondary education level enhances access, transition and academic performance. This seemed not to be the case in Mbita and Suba sub counties, where the transition rates from 2010 to 2014 were 39.4, 41.2, 40.4, 54.5, 59.2 for Mbita, 56.2, 54.4, 61.1 and 59.2 for Suba which were lower than the national transition rates of 68.9, 69.4, 68.4, 76.8 and 80.4 for the same period. The purpose of this study is to determine the influence of Free Secondary Education policy on transition in Mbita and Suba Sub-counties. A conceptual framework based on the Psacharopoulous and Woodhall (1985) production function was adopted to determine the influence of Free Secondary Education policy on transition. The study findings revealed that Free Secondary Education policy influenced transition. However, Free Secondary Education policy had high influence in small and medium schools and very high influence in large schools. The government should therefore increase capitation fees for each student by 100%, employ more teachers, improve infrastructure and where possible merge small and medium schools for purpose of cost effectiveness. It is expected that the findings of this study may inform ministry of education, planners, teachers, parents and policy makers on strategies to improve or redesign Free secondary education policy to improve transition rates at the same time assist in the on-going search for efficient and quality education accessed by all.

DOI: 10.14303/er.2016.126

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