Financial resource mobilization strategies and internal efficiency of public secondary schools in Rachuonyo South Sub-county, Homabay county, Kenya.
Internal efficiency as a measure of school effectiveness is seen in terms of the flow of students in a school system and their performance at the end of an educational cycle. Financial resources are core to the implementation of any school programme. It is believed that internal efficiency is basically dependent on physical, monetary and human resources all of which can be expressed in monetary terms. This study looked at the nature and impact of resource mobilization strategies like user fee, state subsidy, student labour, community funds, NGO funds, income generation activities and schools foundations on internal efficiency measured in terms of the levels of retention, repetition and performance of students. A descriptive survey research design was used. The study used 61 schools out of a sample of 72 public schools in the Sub County. A stratified random sampling technique was used. A head teacher‟s questionnaire was used to collect data from the schools in addition to an observation schedule and an interview schedule. Reliability of the instrument was ascertained using a test-retest procedure getting a Pearson‟s correlation co-efficient of 0.70. Research and Educational Planning and Economics specialists from the School of Education, the University of Nairobi were consulted to help validate the instruments. Both descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyse the data. Findings indicated that more financial resources resulted into enhanced internal efficiency. The research found out that schools which charge and collect more fees on average perform better academically. The schools also had high retention rates and low wastage rates hence high internal efficiency. The receipt of government subsidy through the FTSE program was found to have enhanced internal efficiency since it had reduced both dropout and repeater rates. Also it had improved instructional facilities translating into good examination performance. Though underutilized, foundations and endowments did positively influence school retention rates through providing scholarships to bright and needy students. Harambee funds helped subsidize development of school infrastructure which locks the children of the poor from school. It therefore enhanced retention and transition rates which signify high intern`al efficiency. The proper use of time and human resource in school enhances learning and thus internal efficiency. In terms of resource mobilization, the rationalization of the time and human labour creates savings which reduce cost of education and hence improved internal efficiency. Income generation activities create finances which would support instructional activities and thereafter positively influencing retention rates and performance. The regression analysis results showed that student performance as a measure of internal efficiency had positive relationship with all the considered resource mobilisation strategies. Retention rates have positive relationship with all the strategies in question apart from community funds which showed a negative relationship. Finally, repetition rates had a positive variation with income generating activities and state subsidy. The strategies of user fees, community funds and student labour however had negative relationship with repetition rates. The study recommends that schools should exploit the resources at their disposal effectively and efficiently to reduce the cost of education and cut down wastage in schools. Also the school managers should ensure that schools are run as business entities whose profitability relies on the ability to manipulate available resources to enhance performance, increase retention rates and reduce repetition rates.