Influence of preparation and development of principals on management of public secondary schools in Kisumu East District, Kenya
Principals of Secondary schools fully manage all learning processes and their accompanying logistics in the institutions yet they rarely receive appropriate preparation for their challenging roles and some of them lack basic management skills. This study sought to explore influence of Preparation and Development of Principals on Management of Public Secondary Schools in Kisumu East District. The study was guided by four objectives: To determine the extent to which pre-service training influence management of public secondary schools; To establish the extent to which induction training influence management of public secondary schools; To evaluate how the understudy training influence management of public secondary schools; To assess the extent to which in-service training influence management of public secondary schools. The research was anchored on Peter’s Principle and the contingency theory of leadership which proposes the adoption of training programs that prepare leaders to function effectively in specific organizational situations. 23 out of 38 Public Secondary Schools in Kisumu East District were sampled. The study utilized descriptive survey design and employed simple random, stratified, and purposive sampling techniques to seek the views of all the Principals, Deputy Principals and 3 Heads of Departments from each of the selected schools, giving a total sample size of 115 respondents. A self-administered questionnaire was used in the study for data collection. The collected quantitative data was analyzed using descriptive statistics based on frequency distributions and percentage counts while qualitative data was organized into various emerging themes of the study and reported narratively. Microsoft Excel and Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) were used as tools of data analysis. The major finding of the study was that the existing preparation and Developmental system of Principals was basically weak. As a result Principals in the study schools were experiencing problems which cut across all areas of school management. Nevertheless, The study revealed that 21.05% of the present Principals of secondary schools in the district have a degree or Masters, It was also found that Even though there is a pre-service curriculum at University level meant to provide introductory elements in management, it was not sufficient in developing detailed and thorough knowledge and skills required in managing schools. The study further established that Induction programmes were mainly not timely and did not cover all Principals with 62.2% having never received any form of orientation training on appointment. Understudy training was discovered to be largely ineffective and did not sufficiently prepare potential Principals for the responsibilities in management of schools. 67.5% of the respondents noted that relying on understudy method purely to train principals was risky. Finaly the study concluded that although an attempt had been made to provide in-service courses, with 60% of the respondents having had an opportunity to attend In-service. The trainings were organized on an adhoc basis, lacked sufficient content and coverage. They also lacked follow-up to monitor and evaluate their impact. The researcher has highlighted the study’s contribution to the body of knowledge and acknowledged key sources of information used in the study. The study has also recommended strategies and mitigation measures that could be deployed to address the expressed concerns on Preparation and Development of Principals for effective Management of Public Secondary Schools. Finally, the study has suggested areas for further research for a deeper understanding of the subject of investigation.