Examining Issues Concerning Teacher Effectiveness: A Kenyan Perspective

Examining Issues Concerning Teacher Effectiveness: A Kenyan Perspective

Daniel Otieno Okech (Kenyatta University, Kenya)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-7908-4.ch007
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Abstract

This chapter addresses various issues related to teacher effectiveness in Kenya. The chapter begins with a brief historical perspective of teacher education and effectiveness in Kenya. The discussion provides a theoretical framework based on social constructivism as a philosophical paradigm for teacher effectiveness. It explores models used in teacher preparation in Kenya and the various teacher competencies required for effective teaching in Kenyan schools. The prevalent characteristics of teacher effectiveness in Kenya are discussed along with the dimensions of teacher training, recruitment, induction, evaluation, and professional development. Unique aspects of teacher effectiveness emphasizing information and communication technology are highlighted. Finally, the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on teaching are mentioned.
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Education In Kenya

Education in Kenya is developed and organized in various levels based on the learner’s age. These levels are the Early Years Education (3-6yrs), primary (7-12yrs) and secondary (13-17yrs) levels. These three levels comprise Basic education which is free and compulsory. Upon completion of the Basic Level, the students proceed to the Tertiary level and to pursue courses at Technical and Vocational Training Institutes or join the University. The New Competency Based Curriculum provides career pathways whereby learners can pursue courses in (i) Arts and Sports Science, (ii) Social Sciences, and (iii) Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics. Education in Kenya is provided by the government and private entities. Free and compulsory basic education is provided by the government in public schools. Parents must meet the cost of education beyond the Basic level. Most learners are enrolled in public learning institutions, from Early Years Education to the University level.

The Covid-19 pandemic forced many learners to transfer from private to public schools due to financial challenges faced by parents and private schools who could not sustain their needs. The Covid-19 situation exacerbated the already existing pressure on the number of available slots in schools. Consequently, part of the teaching and learning was conducted outside the normal classrooms (Ngwacho, 2020). Selected researchers report that the lockdowns occasioned by the pandemic have posed long term ramifications especially for the marginalized and vulnerable subgroup of students who have missed opportunities for virtual learning. A majority of these learners are in public schools within rural and semi-arid areas of the country and pockets of low-income areas within urban and peri-urban settlements. Most families in these affected areas have lost their livelihoods and due to poor internet connectivity, they cannot access online education that the government provides during the lockdowns. The pandemic carries a significant and lasting impact on teachers’ instructional delivery and their preparation and development. This impact will be explored in more depth later in this chapter.

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