Influence of headteachers' leadership styles on students' discipline in public secondary schools in Imenti South District
Njagi, Jacinta K
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The purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of headteachers' leadership styles on students' discipline in public secondary schools in Imenti South District. Five research objectives were formulated to guide the study. The research objectives sought to: Identify head teacher's leadership styles in public secondary schools; examine whether headteachers characteristics (age, gender, administrative experience) had any influence on headteachers leadership style; examine whether headteachers democratic leadership style influenced students' discipline; determine whether headteachers autocratic leadership style influenced students' discipline and lastly establish how headteachers laissez faire leadership style influenced students' discipline. The study adopted a descriptive. The sample comprises of 21 headteachers and 420 prefects. The study used questionnaires to gather data: Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyse the data. Findings revealed that head teachers in Meru central district mostly used democratic style on management. The findings also revealed that there was no significant relationship between head teachers administrative experience and students' discipline. Findings also revealed that there was no significant relationship head teachers' gender and their leadership styles. There was no significant relationship between headteachers experience. Findings also showed that there was a positive moderate relationship between the democratic leadership style and discipline. Autocratic negatively influenced students' discipline. The study concluded that democratic were the major leadership styles used. The study concluded that head teachers administrative experience, age and gender did not influence their leadership style. The study further concluded that headteachers gender did not significantly influence headteachers leadership styles. Similarly headteachers administrative experience did not influence their leadership style. However, there was a positive moderate relationship between the democratic leadership style and students discipline. Lastly, head teachers use of autocratic negatively influenced students. Based on the findings it was recommended that there should be induction training in management and leadership for the newly appointed head teachers by the Kenya Educational Management Institute (KEMI). Similarly, a program for Continuous Professional Development including issues of management and leadership is recommended for serving head teachers. The study further recommended that head teachers should involve students in the decision making process of secondary schools at all levels and time. This could be done by involving students' participation in committees such as; disciplinary, security, academic, and welfare. The study also recommended that head teachers should communicate with students at all times. This could be done through organizing regular meetings for example thrice a term, writings notices in the notice board, sending memos to classes to enhance discipline matters in the schools. Considering that the current study was limited to the Imenti South District which is a rural setting, another study can be carried to cover the whole country.