Socio-economic Factors Influencing Girls’ Participation In Education Among The Internally Displaced Persons In Camps In Naivasha District, Kenya
The gender imbalance against girls is a reflection of a complex combination of historical, socio – economic, socio-cultural and other factors which influence the participation of girls in education among the IDPs in Naivasha. Those factors lead to unequal chances for boys and girls to enter primary school. One of the government’s key philosophies for education is the concern that every Kenyan should be educated. However, only a minority has attained such a level of formal education especially girls. The major purpose of this study was to assess how socio economic factors influence girls’ participation in education among the IDPs in Naivasha District. The socio economic factors being assessed include poverty, socio-cultural, and parental attitudes towards girl child education. The study aims to determine the socio-economic factors influencing girls’ participation in education among the IDPs. The sample for the study was 3 head teachers, 20 teachers and 271 pupils.Respondents were sampled using simple random and systematic random sampling techniques. Data were collected using self-administered questionnaires for head teachers, teachers, and pupils. Descriptive statistics methods were used to present and analyze data. Information from data analysis was presented in the form of frequency tables, percentages, pie-charts and bar graphs. Findings revealed that there were socio-economic factors that contributed to low participation of girls in education. Most parents were economically challenged hence could not meet the basic needs of their daughters especially sanitary towels.Socio-cultural factors also contributed to low participation of girls in schools. The factors included early marriages, early pregnancies helping at household chores, taking care of other family members, preference of education of boys to girls, cultural beliefs and cultural rites. Parents withdraw their children from school in order to have them engaged in income generating activities. Most schools were not girl-friendly and ended up dissuading some from attending school such as distance covered to and from school. It was also revealed that there were parental factors which contributed to low participation of girls in schools, this included, parental level of education, bias in parental support and parental involvement in their children’s education. There is poverty, gender violence in school, pregnancy, hidden costs in schools like uniforms, lack of school funds. The study therefore recommended that there is need for the government to train the IDP community on the importance of educating girls. It also recommended establishment of more rescue centers to save girls from cultural rites and practice and also establish bursary schemes in order to make education accessible for poor children particularly girls.