THE IMPACT OF COMMUNITY SUPPORT GRANT ON ACCESS TO EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION AND DEVELOPMENT IN THARAKA DISTRICT

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This study investigated impact of community support grant on access to ECDE in Tharaka
District, in Eastern province, Kenya.  The objectives that guided the study were to
determine the level of access and quality of Early Childhood Development and Education
following implementation of community support grant in Tharaka District, determine
challenges facing the implementation of community support grant and to determine
effective strategies to remedy the challenges facing the implementation of community
support grant in that district. The significance of the study was to generate data that can be
used to address the challenges facing implementation of the community support grant.
Findings and recommendation of this  study can be used to improve access to Early
Childhood Development and Education and help DEO to confirm whether the grant was
well utilized. The limitation of the study was inadequate literature and data on impact of
community support grant. The study assumptions were that grant given was used to
provide the facilities as intended and improve access. Among the reviewed literature
included access to basic education in Kenya and its inherent concerns and challenges
facing implementation of community support grant. The target population comprised of 60
head teachers, 120 ECDE teachers, 5 DICECE officers and 1 DEO in Tharaka District.
This study adopted a descriptive research survey and data was analyzed using descriptive
statistics. 30 head teachers and 30 ECDE teachers were sampled through simple random
sampling and 5 DICECE officers and 1 DEO were purposively sampled. Instrument
piloting was conducted to five schools that were not included in the study.
The  findings
for this study were that the major  impact of community support grants to ECDE included
quality of learning and teaching materials,  improved enrolment (access), reduced cost of
education, improved teacher salary top ups, improved quality of learning environment. A
number of challenges included underpayment of teachers, delay in releasing the funds,
inadequate funding, underpayment of teachers, endemic poverty among a grater number of
parents. The study also identified a number of strategies that can be employed to mitigate
the challenges e.g. increase CSG funding, inclusion of ECDE in the programe of FPE,
employment of ECDE teachers by the government, prompt realizing of CSGs to
beneficially schools, initiating income generating projects to supplement CSG.
Questionnaires were administered to the respondents and the following conclusions were
made. Underpayment of ECDE teachers, delay in releasing the fund and inadequate
funding. In regard of the above, the following recommendations were made. Increase the
community support funding, inclusion of ECDE in FPE programme, employment of
ECDE teachers by the government and initiating income generating project to supplement
community support grant.

Author: 
MIGWI SELINE MUKWAMUGAO
Unit: 
COMMTECH

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