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The purpose of this study was to investigate the school-based factors influencing students’
performance in Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education in public secondary schools in Homa
Bay district. The objectives of the study were: To determine the influence of head teachers’
instructional supervision practices on students’ performance in KCSE in Homa Bay district; to
determine the influence of teachers’ characteristics such as professional qualifications on
students’ performance in KCSE; to determine the effects of physical facilities on students KCSE
performance; to examine the influence of student management services on students’ KCSE
performance; and to establish the influence of provision of teaching and learning materials on
students’ performance in KCSE in Homa Bay district. The study was guided by the Systems
Theory of organizations. The study adopted the descriptive survey design. The study targeted 32
head teachers and 243 teachers in 32 public secondary schools. Stratified and simple  random
sampling methods were used to select 16 public secondary schools. The respondents were head
teachers and heads of departments. All the head teachers from the sampled schools took part in
the study. Purposive sampling was used to pick 5 heads of departments from each sampled
school giving a total of 80 heads of departments. Data was collected using questionnaires which
were piloted to test for validity and reliability. Quantitative and qualitative techniques were used
in data analysis. Data was analyzed using SPSS and presented in descriptive statistics to generate
frequencies and percentages. The study found that in schools where head teachers carried out
regular instructional supervision, performance was better than where this was not done regularly;
teachers’ characteristics such as professional qualifications influence students’ performance;
availability of physical facilities; student personnel management services and provision of
teaching and learning materials influenced students perfomance. The study also found that other
factors such as motivation levels of teachers influence students’ performance. The study
concluded that head teachers’ instructional supervision practices influence students’perfomance;
teachers’ characteristics such professional qualifications influence students’ KCSE performance;
availability of physical facilities affect students’ performance; students personnel management
services such as guidance and counseling can  positively or negatively influence students’
performance ;and provision of teaching and learning resources influence students’ KCSE
performance. There are many other factors within and outside the school which influence
students’ performance. The recommendations included: head teachers should undertake
supervisory duties seriously and  enhance appropriate student management services such as
guidance and counseling; the BOGs and PTAs of public secondary schools should provide
adequate teaching and learning resources and physical facilities. The study finally recommended
that the TSC in collaboration with the Ministry of Education should employ more qualified
teachers. Among the suggestions for further research was that a comparative study be conducted
in other districts in the province using similar research tools.

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