Factors influencing gender parity in adult basic education programmes in Masaba North district, Kenya
AbstractAdult education is the art and science of teaching and educating adults. Adult education takes place in the work place through extension school or school of continuing education. Other learning places include community colleges, folk high schools and life-long learning centers. The purpose of the study was to investigate the factors influencing gender parity in adult basic education programme in Masaba North district, Nyamira county.
The following objectives guided the study. To establish whether the social-cultural gender roles influence adult learner-enrolment in the adult basic education programmes, to establish the attitudes of both male and female adult learners to adult basic education programmes and their influence on enrolment; to examine the teaching and learning resources used in adult basic education programmes and their influence on enrolment, to find out whether the gender-mix education influence adult learner enrolment in the adult basic education programmes, to examine the appropriateness of teaching content used in adult basic education programmes and their influence on enrolment.
The theoretical framework that guided the study was based on the curriculum implementation theory propounded by Gross (1971). The dysfunctional theory states that any educational programme brings in mind the question of learning resources teachers training, teaching resources, learning facilities, attitudes of the learners and the content covered. The study employed the use of simple random sampling to select the adult learners who were interviewed. The study sample comprised of 10 adult education centres, 40 adult learners, 10 adult education teachers, and 3 District Adult Education Supervisors.
The research instruments used in this study were questionnaires and interview schedules. A pilot study was taken to establish the instrument validity. To ascertain the reliability of the instrument the test -retest technique was used. The findings of the study, teaching and learning resources are not adequate, most of the adult learners are female and have positive attitude towards adult basic education. The social - cultural factors was the leading factors for gender disparity. Theoretically the research was expected to contribute to the advancement of the knowledge about gender sensitive curriculum development by the Kenya Institute of Education. The data was analyzed using Statistical software and presented using frequency tables, pie chart and bar chart.
The study concluded that there is a widespread and systematic gender parity in enrollment of adults in literacy centers and was being caused by several factors such as lack of teaching and learning resources. The research recommends that adult education literacy programmes should be restructured to suit the learners needs and equip them with relevant skills and knowledge. The government should also employ more trained teachers. This could help to boost enrolment of adult learners and in areas where male learners do not want to share a class with female learners separate classes or different days should be put in place to cater for all.
The following were suggestions for further study. The study needs to be carried out to ascertain how best adult basic education programmes can be structured so as to realize vision 2030 and attain over 90 percent literacy levels in the country. A qualitative approach using a larger sample should also be used to find out whether
it will elicit different results.