Understanding the Dynamics of Access, Transition and Quality of Education in six urban sites in Kenya (ERP III)
African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC) had from 2005 to 2010, conducted a longitudinal survey in two formal settlements (Harambee and Jericho) and two informal (slum) settlements (Korogocho and Viwandani) in Nairobi to understand the uptake and patterns of school enrolment after the introduction of the Free Primary Education (FPE) in Kenya. The results of the study showed increased utilization of private informal schools among slum households as compared to the formal settlements.
That is, by 2010, almost two thirds of pupils in the slum settlements were enrolled in private informal schools while in Harambee and Jericho, more than three quarters of the pupils were enrolled in government primary schools with the remaining portion attending high-end private schools.
In 2012, ERP conducted a cross-sectional survey across six major urban centers to investigate, within the context of FPE, if the pattern of school enrolment observed in Korogocho and Viwandani slums could also be observed in other urban slums in Kenya. Below are some key facts from this study. Data is manly disaggregated by school type - government schools (FPE schools), and non-government schools, specifically the formal private schools and low-cost schools.
The study tried to answer four broad questions: What is the impact of free primary education (FPE) on schooling patterns among poor households in urban slums in Kenya? What are the qualitative and quantitative explanations of the observed patterns? Is there a difference in achievement measured by performance in a standardized test on literacy and numeracy administered to pupils in government schools under FPE and non-government schools?
Version 1.2, November 2014. With anonymized datasets, DOI and Recommended Citation.
Opportunity to Learn
Kenya - in six urban slums of Nairobi spread across 6 towns - Nairobi, Mombasa, Nyeri, Eldoret, Nakuru and Kisumu. In total 5854 households and 230 schools were covered.
Unit of Analysis
A cross-sectional survey focusing on households with individuals aged between 5 and 19, as well as schools and pupils in grades 3 and 6. Data therefore exits at household, individuals, schools and student levels.
This is a cross sectional study that was conducted in seven slum sites spread across six towns namely Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret, Nakuru and Nyeri and targetted hoseholds with individuals aged between 5 and 19 years and schools located within the study site or within a 1KM radius. For the schools to be included in the study they had to have both grade 3 and 6, which were target grades for this study.
Producers and sponsors
Authoring entity/Primary investigators
African Population and Health Research Center
Dr. Moses Ngware
Dr. Moses Oketch
William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
Kenya National Bureau Of Statistics
Maps on the ground and Listing
This was a cross-sectional study involving schools and households. The study covered six purposively selected major towns (Eldoret, Kisumu, Mombasa, Nairobi, Nakuru and Nyeri) in different parts of Kenya (see Map 1) to provide case studies that could lead to a broader understanding of what is happening in urban informal settlements. The selection of a town was informed by presence of informal settlements and its administrative importance, that is, provincial headquarter or regional business hub. A three-stage cluster sampling procedure was used to select households in all towns with an exception of Nairobi. At the first stage, major informal settlement locations were identified in each of the six towns. The informal settlement sites were identified based on enumeration areas (EAs) designated as slums in the 2009 National Population and Housing Census conducted by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS). After identifying all slum EAs in each of the study towns, the location with the highest number of EAs designated as slum settlements was selected for the study. At the second stage of sampling, 20% of EAs within each major slum location were randomly selected. However, in Nakuru we randomly selected 67% (10) EAs while in Nyeri all available 9 EAs were included in the sample. This is because these two towns had fewer EAs and therefore the need to oversample to have a representative number of EAs. In total, 101 EAs were sampled from the major slum locations across the five towns. At the third stage, all households in the sampled EAs were listed using the 2009 census' EA maps prepared by KNBS. During the listing, 10,388 households were listed in all sampled EAs. Excluding Nairobi, 4,042 (57%) households which met the criteria of having at least one school-going child aged 5-20 years were selected for the survey. In Nairobi, 50% of all households which had at least one school-going child aged between 5 and 20 years were randomly sampled from all EAs existing in APHRC schooling data collected in 2010. A total of 3,060 households which met the criteria were selected. The need to select a large sample of households in Nairobi was to enable us link data from the current study with previous ones that covered over 6000 households in Korogocho and Viwandani. By so doing, we were able to get a representative sample of households in Nairobi to continue observing the schooling patterns longitudinally. In all, there were 7,102 eligible households in all six towns. A total of 14,084 individuals within the target age bracket living in 5,854 (82% of all eligible households) participated in the study. The remaining 18% of eligible households were not available for the interview as most of them had either left the study areas, declined the interview, or lacked credible respondents in the household at the time of the data collection visit or call back.
For the school-based survey, schools in each town were listed and classified into three groups based on their location: (i) within the selected slum location; (ii) within the catchment area of the selected slum area - about 1 km radius from the border of the study locations; and (iii) away from a selected slum. In Nairobi, schools were selected from existing APHRC data. During the listing exercise, lists of schools were also obtained from Municipality/City Education Departments in selected towns. The lists were used to counter-check the information obtained during listing. All schools located within the selected slum areas and those situated within the catchment area (1 km radius from the border of the slum) were included in the sample as long as they had a grade 6 class or intended to have one in 2012. The selection of schools within an informal settlement and those located within 1 km radius was because they were more likely to be accessed by children from the target informal settlement. Two hundred and forty-five (245) schools met the selection criteria and were included in the sample. Two hundred and thirty (230) primary schools (89 government schools, 94 formal private, and 47 low-cost schools) eventually participated in the survey. A total of 7,711 grade 3, 7,319 grade 6 pupils and 671 teachers of the same grades were reached and interviewed. All 230 head teachers (or their deputies) were interviewed on school characteristics.
In total,5854 households consiting of about 14000 individuals, 230 schools, about 15000 pupils, 668 teachers and 230 head teachers; 6 FGDS
The logistics on the group involved putting the field team into teams, headed by a team leader. Each site also had an overall supervisor. Several measures were taken to ensure that quality data were collected during the period. First, team members in various study sites held daily meetings to discuss issues related to fieldwork. Second, team leaders went through all the questionnaires checking for errors including inconsistencies. If a team leader found inconsistent information while editing, he/she had to go back to the same household to confirm the information with the person who responded to the questionnaire. All team members edited their work daily before submitting to their respective team leaders. Third, team leaders also accompanied different teams to observe data collection. They also had sit-ins with household FIs and conducted random spot-checks in some households to ensure quality. Finally, the core research team also visited every study site and conducted random household spot checks. Following these visits, the core research team held meetings with the teams and communicated issues and challenges that they came across and brainstormed on ways to improve the quality of data collection. In general, close and intensive supervision by team leaders and researchers ensured that the survey was conducted in a professional way and that quality data was collected.
Type of Research Instrument
Five survey questionnaires were administered at household level:
(i). An individual schooling history questionnaire was administered to individuals aged 5 - 20. The questionnaire was directly administered to individuals aged 12 - 20 and administered to a proxy for children younger than 12 years. Ideally, the proxy was the child's parent or guardian, or an adult familiar with the individual's schooling history and who usually resides in the same household. The questionnaire had two main sections: school participation for the current year (year of interview), and school participation for the five years preceding the year of interview (i.e. 2007 to 2011). The section on schooling participation on the current year collected information on the schooling status of the individual, the type, name and location of the school that the individual was attending, grade, and whether the individual had changed schools or dropped out of school in the current year. Respondents also provided information on the reasons for changing schools and dropping out of school, where applicable. The section on school participation for previous years also collected similar information. The questionnaire also collected information on the individual's year of birth and when they joined grade one.
(ii). A household schedule questionnaire was administered to the household head or the spouse. It sought information on the members of the household, their relationship to the household head, their gender, age, education and parental survivorship.
(iii). A parental/guardian perception questionnaire was administered to the household head or the parent/guardian of the child. It collected information on the parents/guardians' perceptions on Free Primary Education since its implementation, household support to school where child(ren) attends and household schooling decision.
(iv). A parental/guardian involvement questionnaire was strictly administered to a parent or guardian who usually lives in the household and who was equipped with adequate knowledge of the individual's schooling information (i.e. credible respondent). The questionnaire was completed for each individual of the targeted age bracket (5-20 years). The information on the child comprised questions on the gender of the child, parental/guardian aspirations for the child's educational attainment, and parental beliefs about the child's ability in school and their chances of achieving the aspired level.
(v). A household amenities and livelihood questionnaire was administered to the household head or the spouse or a member of the household who could give reliable information. The questionnaire collected information on duration of stay in the area, household possessions, access to basic amenities, and shocks experienced by the household.
Seven instruments were administered at school level:
(i). A primary school institutional questionnaire was administered to the head teacher (or deputy). The questionnaire collected information on school infrastructure, availability of teaching resources, staffing (number, qualification, absenteeism, and recruitment), school charges, students' enrollment and absenteeism, school ownership and management.
(ii). A Math/English teacher questionnaire was administered to grades 3 and 6 Math and English teachers. The questionnaire collected data on teachers' demographic characteristics, level of education, pre- and in-service trainings, years of experience in teaching the subject, supervision by curriculum advisor/school inspector, workload, support from head teacher/deputy head teacher, interactions with parents, and availability of teaching materials and teaching practices.
(iii). A student background characteristics questionnaire was administered to grade 6 pupils. This tool gathered information on pupils' socio-demographic characteristics (age, sex, parents' level of education, household socio-economic status), school homework, language spoken outside school, pupil and teacher absenteeism, and schooling history.
(iv). A classroom observation checklist was completed during classroom observations. This checklist collected information on pre-lesson preparation by Math and English teachers; number of pupils present and absent during the date of interview; availability of visual aids, teaching materials in the classroom; and classroom environment such as sufficient writing space, light, ventilation, and students seating arrangement.
(v). A grade 3 and 6 numeracy tool was used to assess grades 3 and 6 pupils' Mathematics ability.
(vi). A grade 3 and 6 literacy tool was used to assess grades 3 and 6 pupils' literacy skills.
(vii). A Math teacher knowledge assessment tool was administered to grades 3 and 6 Math teachers to assess teachers' pedagogical knowledge in Mathematics.
In addition to the quantitative survey, we collected qualitative data by conducting three Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) at school level in each study site. This comprised one FGD with mixed teachers drawn from government and non-government schools, and two others with grade 3 and 6 pupils' parents in both government and non-government schools separately.
Data editing took place at a number of stages throughout the processing, including:
a) Office editing and coding
b) During data entry
c) Structure checking and completeness
d) Secondary editing
During data entry, any issues or incosistencies arising from the questionniares were edited in coslulation with the field team and sometimes with the respondents.
Data entry was performed manually at APHRC's headquarters on desktop computers and was done using an in-house built system with a Microsoft Visual Basic and MS SQL softwares.
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African Population and Health Research Center, Understanding the Dynamics of Access, Transition and Quality of Education in six urban sites in Kenya (ERP III), December 2013. APHRC, Nairobi. doi:11239/176-2012-020-1.2
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