Factors that contribute to low enrolment in youth polytechnics in Nyeri zone, of Nyeri South District, Nyeri county
Muriithi, Scolastica W
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This study is aimed at establishing the factors that contribute to low enrolment in youth polytechnics in Nyeri Zone of Nyeri South District in Nyeri County. The study was guided by the following objectives: a) to explore the extent to which the policies set for youth training affect enrolment, b) to determine the extent to which attitude towards youth polytechnics affect enrolment, c) to establish the extent to which the level of awareness of courses offered influences enrolment, d) to investigate the extent to which co-curricular activities in polytechnics affect enrolment and e) to establish the extent to which levies paid by students in youth polytechnics affect enrolment. The study used descriptive survey design. The target population was managers, teachers and students of the 16 youth polytechnics in Nyeri Zone, out of school youth and administrators. Questionnaires were used to obtain important information about the population. The researcher used both qualitative and quantitative techniques to analyze the data with the help of Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS). The study found out that the policy guidelines governing the running of YPs are not clear and are also inconsistent. It was however noted that the policy guidelines on entry are favourable to a wide cross section of youths which increases the accessibility of youth to the institutions. This in turn encourages enrolment. On the effect of attitude on enrolment, it was found that the majority of youth who drop out of YPs do so because they develop negative attitude towards the training. Further results showed that area assistant chiefs rarely participate in YPs implying that their attitude towards YPs is negative. This adversely affects enrolment as they are opinion shapers in xii their locations. On the effect of awareness of courses offered in YPs it was found that the level is very low. This was evident in the fact that the majority of the respondents learn about the courses offered through friends. On the effect of co-curricular activities on enrolment, it was found that the only activity mostly found was football and that the matches are mostly organized at institutional level. This was attributed to lack of funds and facilities. Finally, on the effect of levies charged, it was established that about half of the dropouts do so for they cannot raise the fees expected. This contradicted sharply with the government subsidies of Kshs 15,000 per student. This indicates that the government should put in more support to reduce the levies the students are charged. Based on the findings, the researcher recommended that the government should streamline the policies that govern the running of YPs and give more financial supports to reduce levies students are charged. It should also sensitize the youth and public on the importance of vocational training through its relevant agencies. This should change the attitude of the society towards youth polytechnics. The YPs and other stakeholders should publicize the courses offered to improve awareness. They should also introduce more co-curricular activities to attract more youth to join the institutions.