Influence of economic stimulus programs's management on primary school infrastructure projects in Southern part of Kitui County, Kenya
The aim of this study was to assess the influence .of Economic Stimulus Program (ESP) project management in the implementation of the ESP primary school infrastructure funded projects in Southern Part of Kitui County. The objectives of the study were to establish the influence of economic stimulus projects' management skills on primary school infrastructure; influence of involving community in the economic stimulus projects' management on implementation of primary school infrastructure, influence of economic stimulus projects' financial management on implementation of primary school infrastructure, influence of politics in economic stimulus projects' management on implementation of primary school infrastructure and influence of school head teachers in economic stimulus projects' management on implementation of primary school infrastructure, in Southern Part of Kitui County. A survey research design was adopted. This study targeted a population of the 104 ESP primary school infrastructure committee members in the 8 ESP primary schools of the 4 constituencies of the Southern Part of Kitui County. Purposive sampling was used to select constituencies the Kitui Central and Mutito constituencies due to the nature of the Financial State Data that was collected for this study, the respondents' familiarity and confidence with the researcher were necessary for successful collection of this kind of data. A sample size of 32 was sampled which was 30% of the population, the minimum recommended representative sample of the population if the target population is small as the 104 for this study. Questionnaire and interview guides were used for data collection. Lecturers from the department of extra mural studies in the University of Nairobi ascertained the validity of the instruments, by reading through so as to ensure that there are no double meanings or ambiguities in the items. A test-retest pilot study using 10 ESP primary school projects management committee members in one of the primary schools out of the 4 schools in the Southern Part of Kitui County were conducted to ensure that the questionnaire was reliable. The ESP school used for pilot study was not included in the actual data collection process. The questionnaire was personally administered to the sample ESP primary SIC members and the face-to-face interview by the researcher during data collection period. Quantitative data were analyzed using descriptive statistics such as frequency distributions, percentages, mean values and standard deviation values and the findings were presented in frequency distribution tables and explanations were discussed in between these tables. Qualitative data were analyzed by grouping similar thematic data from the head teacher interviews and narrations of verbatim quotations and reported pictorially with pictures of the photographs that were taken at the ESP project construction sites. From the study findings it was concluded that the ESP primary school structural infrastructure projects were timely and it had made positive impacts in these schools and in academioperformance in the 2011-KCPE examination. The assumption that the politically selected ESP primary SIC members and the head teachers were knowledgeable in project management skills was unfortunate. Since Primary Teacher I (PI) Certificate usually involves lower levels of financial and project management training, these skills were inadequate in the three selected ESP primary schools. Although, the community was not involved in the implementation of the ESP projects, they were happy with the initiative, because it had relieved parents the payment of projects' funds. The head teachers were not actively involved in the ESP project implementation. There commendations of the study were that: There was need for competent and skilled ESP primary SIC members and head teachers so it was imperative for all ESP project managers to at least take a course in project management to be effective in implementing these projects.Also recommended were use of other units of public administration instead of the constituencies as the ESP funds' disbursement and sharing units to avoid the politicization of the ESP projects. Suggestions for further studies on ESP funded projects for comparison with these findings were recommended.