Effects of hidden costs on students’ grade to grade transition rates in secondary schools in Nandi County, Kenya
The purpose of this study was to establish the effects of hidden costs on grade to grade transitions in public secondary schools in Nandi County. Four research questions guided the study. The research study adopted a descriptive survey design. The sample comprised of 248 teachers and 510 students. Data were collected by use of questionnaires and were analysed by use of quantitative techniques. The findings indicated that transition rate of students from one grade to another was still low with teachers giving repetition as the major cause. Teachers also revealed that extra levies are charged on students leading to payment of extra school fee. Findings revealed that costs of school uniform affected students‘ transition. Findings further revealed that PTA levies affected students‘ grade to grade transition. Schools charge extra levies to students other than what the government had paid for in free day secondary education. Cost for example motivation fee, building fund, examination fee and remedial fee were all paid by the students and those who could not afford were sent home. Findings on how foregone earnings affected students‘ grade to grade transitions were revealed. Findings also revealed that transport costs affected students‘ transition. Students also were in agreement with the teachers that problem of getting fare to school lead to absenteeism. The research findings indicated that fare and means to school has the greatest influence on grade to grade transitions in public secondary school in Nandi County. The study also concluded that cost of school uniform affect students‘ grade to grade transition in public secondary schools in Nandi County. Students who do not have school uniforms are sent home. The study also concluded that PTA levies affect students‘ grade to grade transition in public secondary schools in Nandi County. Schools charge extra levies to students other than what the government had paid for in free day secondary education. The study also concluded that foregone earnings affected students‘ grade to grade transition in secondary schools in Nandi County. Lastly the study concluded that transport costs influence students‘ grade to grade transition in secondary schools in Nandi County. The study recommended that there is need for regular review of the fees structure guidelines for public secondary schools in view to accommodate the changing economic trends and inflation rates. It is also essential to develop special funding programmes for female students to address their unique needs. These include need for sanitary pads. The government through the Ministry of Education should establish whether there is need to accommodate additional items in their fees structure guidelines. The study suggested that there is need to study how hidden costs of education affect academic performance of students in urban day schools as compared to those in rural areas. Since the study was carried out in rural areas, there is need to carry out a similar study in urban school and compare the findings. Since the study was carried out in secondary schools, it may be important to carry out a study on the influence of hidden cost of pupils‘ grade transition in primary schools.