A study of factors influencing time management practices among public secondary school principals in Uasin Gishu District
This study set out to investigate the factors influencing principals' time management practices in secondary schools in Uasin Gishu District. In particular, the study sought to establish the principals time management practices in focusing on performance goals, priorities, analyses, plans and schedules, paper work, interruptions, travel, procrastination, stress and balance, as they performed their administrative roles, which include school plant management, personnel management (staff and students), school community liaison, and evaluation. Their perception of how they dealt with the foregoing time management aspects was determined in relation to their age, sex, academic qualifications, administrative experience and school size, category and geographical location. To achieve this purpose, a questionnaire was used as the sole data collection instrument to gather data from the sampled 38 principals. Part A of the questionnaire was used to gather demographic and school data from the subjects. Part B was used to gather data on 11 time management aspects on a 5-point Likert Scale. The conceptual framework depicted the relationship and the effect that time manaqement practices can have on school administration and consequently on achievement of school objectives. All the 38 principals returned statistically usable questionnaires. The raw data was checked, coded and transferred to a computer sheet. It was then analyzed with the assistance of a data analyst. The analyzed data was presented using frequency distribution tables and discussed descriptively using qualitative descriptions. Over 70% of the principals recorded effective time management practices in dealing with the following aspects: setting annual performance goals, reviewing long range goals, listing and prioritising tasks to be performed, scheduling tasks and analyzing them, maintaining flexibility, analysing tasks, sorting out paper work, and in collaborating with others in the school. Poor time management practices were particularly recorded by more than 50% of the principals on procrastination, management of time in business trips, keeping records of how time was spent, managing accidental crisis, punctual but streneous task completion and in handling simple as compared to complex tasks. The study concluded that time management practices have an impact on school management, realization of individual and organizational objectives and can create harmony or conflict between individual and organizational interests. The study recommended introduction of a time management course in the teacher-training curriculum. It also recommended seminars, workshops and refresher courses JO equip principals with knowledge, skills and attitude on proper time management practices. Immense flexibility, balancing time to perform various tasks and prioritizing tasks were also recommended for effective administrative task performance. Delegation of simple tasks to the subordinates, cooperation with them (subordinates) to avoid overburdening oneself was also recommended. The final recommendation was that the principals should set aside discretionary time from response time.