Influence of parents’ involvement on learning outcomes of early childhood learners in Makuani county, Kenya
Musyoka, Agnes Mwongeli
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The purpose of the study was to assess the influence of parents’ involvement on learning outcomes of ECDE learners in Makueni Sub-county, Makueni County, Kenya. The objectives of the study were; to assess influence of parents’ involvement in homework activities, school decision-making, volunteering activities and parent-school communication on learning outcomes of early childhood learners. The study was guided by parental involvement theory and learning outcomes theory. The study adopted a mixture of qualitative and quantitative approaches of methodology. The study applied concurrent triangulation design in which researcher implemented the quantitative and qualitative method at the same time and with equal weight. Target population comprised 76 headteachers, 304 ECDE teachers, 304 parents’ representatives and 2,500 ECDE learners. Using the Central Limit Theorem, a sample of 200 respondents were selected. Stratified sampling was applied to create five strata based on the number of zones in Makueni Sub-county. From the sample, the researcher selected 15 headteachers, 90 ECDE teachers, 30 parents’ representatives and 65 ECDE learners. Questionnaires were used to collect data from headteachers and ECDE teachers, interview guides were used to collect data from parents’ representatives whereas observation checklists were used to gather information from ECDE learners. Piloting was conducted amongst 20 respondents from a sample of ECDE centers in Makueni Sub-county to establish validity and reliability. Validity was established using experts in early childhood studies whose opinions helped improve content validity of the instruments. Reliability was established using split-half method and a reliability index, r = 0.937, was obtained using Cronbach Alpha Method which indicated high internal reliability. Data analysis began by identifying common themes. Qualitative data were analyzed thematically along the study objectives and presented in narrative forms. Quantitative data were analyzed descriptively using frequencies and percentages and inferentially using ANOVA to test the null hypotheses with the help of Statistical Packages for Social Science (SPSS 23) and presented using tables. The study established that parents’ involvement in children’s homework, decision making, volunteering and parent-school communication influence outcomes of ECDE learners. This was affirmed by rejection of the null hypotheses by ANOVA analysis which generated, p (0.000) <0.05 for parental involvement in homework activities, p (0.000) <0.05 for parental involvement in school decision-making, p(0.000) < 0.05 for parental involvement in volunteering activities and p(0.0015) < 0.05 for parent-school communication. The study recommends that parents need to attend academic seminars to sensitize them on their roles as role models for their children. The County Government ought to develop a homework policy to make the parents and teachers understand their roles outside the normal classroom setup.
Africa Nazarene University