The effects of child labour on pupil’s participation in Primary school education in Kirisia Division,Samburu County, Kenya
The main objective of the study was to examine various forms of child labour, causes of child labour, the community’s perception towards child labour and the effect of child labour on participation of primary school education in Samburu County. The study adopted a descriptive survey design. The target population comprised of pupils, class teachers and Head teachers from eight primary schools in Samburu County, District Education Officer in Samburu, parents and local chiefs. Primary data was collected using questionnaires and interview guides. The analysis was done using descriptive statistics generated from Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software. The study findings revealed that child labour in Samburu County was prevalent and has adversely affected the level of pupil participation in primary school education. Child labour has led to decline in pupils' academic performance, drop out from schools, decreased levels of literacy in the County, and increase in gender disparity in education within the region. Child labour was associated with poor concentration in class, increased rates of teenage pregnancies, engagement in drug abuse and involvement in armed conflicts. The main factors leading to the problem of child labor were found to be high poverty levels in the region, harmful cultural beliefs and practices, lack of appropriate government policies, ignorance and illiteracy among parents as well as loss of parents. The study has recommended that the problem of child labour in Samburu County can be tackled if the local community is adequately empowered with knowledge on the importance of education in the present day society; government policies should be reviewed and streamlined to cater for educational challenges that are specific to arid and semi-arid areas; education policy implementation at local level in Samburu County should be re-evaluated and parents should be fully involved in tackling the problem of child labour. The measures aimed at promoting education in Samburu County should give specific consideration to poverty levels in the region, cultural beliefs and practices and appropriateness of government policies. vi The study also recommends further research on the effectiveness of government policies in mitigating the falling levels of pupil participation in primary school education in Samburu County. It also recommends a replication of this study in other child labour prone areas such as slums and miraa growing areas.