«THE INFLUENCE OF DISCIPLINE MANAGEMENT BY HEAD TEACHERS ON STUDENTS’ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE IN SELECTED PRIVATE SECONDARYSCHOOLS OF BUSIRO COUNTY IN ...»
Ramharia (2006), carried out a study on indiscipline and violence in Mauritius schools and established that, Mauritanian primary and secondary schools have witnessed social changes due to the once booming economy. The Mauritanian youth are therefore living in a society transformed by technological progress on one hand and still tied to traditional, patriarchal and institutional structure on the other. Mauritanian schools suffer from deteriorating discipline as a result, which requires urgent attention. According to the survey conducted by Felister (2008), in the secondary schools in Tanzania, it was discovered that, majority of the headmasters and headmistresses lacked administrative skills and spent most of their time outside the school premises, hence becoming unaware of what was happening in their schools an indication of poor time management. The effect of this poor time management on students‟ academic performance remained unknown and thus a need for this study.
A critical analysis of the above studies shows that researchers concentrated on time management in a class situation but without looking at its effects on academic performance of students. Also the current time management practices in most secondary schools in Uganda had remained unknown and always raised a big concern. This study has therefore revealed the effects of time management on students‟ academic performance.
2.3.2. The effect of administrations of punishments by head teachers on students’ academic performance According to Nagawa (1998) in Mpiso (2004), there are various types of punishments that are administered in the secondary schools in Uganda. These include the different modes or forms, which prevail in our schools in Uganda such as reprimand, bawling out, ridiculing sarcasm, belittling, name calling, withdraw of privileges, social isolation, demotion, putting placards around the offenders neck, standing or kneeling in front of class, exercise drills such as raising arms while carrying weight, suspension and expulsion from school, corporal punishment, restitution and detention or keeping students after school According to traditional African teaching and learning, power relations dominated it. Children were expected to take instructions from adults and assimilated knowledge with out questioning its source. Questioning its source and challenging the opinion of the instructor could be regarded as rude and Tantamount to punishment (Gyekye, 2002). However despite the existence of learning theories signaling the barriers punishments regimes pose to effective teaching and learning, the practice continues to be predicted on traditional norms and expectations of the society and this is true in our schools where adults expect that children who misbehave in school or at home will be punished (Rosen, 1997).
According to Mafabi, et al (1993), punishments are expected to suppress unwanted response during the time students are under teachers‟ observation. This opinion is also shared by (Cotton, et al 2000), who said that Punishments in a school system are expected to teach students the relationship between their behaviors and the outcome or accountability for their mistakes.
Cowley (2001), also argued that with a well-behaved class, teaching could be among the most wonderful jobs in the world. However what really occurs on the ground is that unwanted behaviors are on the increase despite the presence of these punishments. Teachers are worried about the aggression being directed to them by both students and their parents. This has resulted into some students being expelled, others suspended, forced to do hard labor at school, chased out of classes all of which seem to affect their academic performance. This study therefore investigated the existing relationship between administration of punishments and academic performance.
The supreme objective of punishment is to impose a penalty on the offender, which corresponds to the character of the offence. However according to Muthoga (1997), some forms of punishments create psychological problems among students. An example was given by Muthoga (1997) of a cane that make children fear even going to school for fear of being caned again. This ends up defeating the whole purpose of education and thus affecting the students‟ academic performance.
Hogan and Pressley (1997), also concurred with Muthoga (1997), who noted that some modes of punishments were discovered to create fear among students that led to truancy and premature attrition. Premature attrition from school could lead to social exclusion, as the students who were affected would not have acquired any productive skills that would benefit them and the society in which they live. The implication is that they would become social outcasts. They further argued that some forms of punishments like corporal punishment could lead to physical injury if teachers were not careful in its administration. This would lead to absence from schools and consequently reducing the academic performance of the injured students.
Baumard (1999), shared the same opinion and argued that punishment is a means of controlling disruptive behavior. He further stated that if punishment is the logical result of misconduct, the student is likely to accept it without resentment. Teachers need always to help students to realize the appropriateness of punishment before initiating it. Cotton, (2000), also contends that uniform punishment can be an effective way of controlling students‟ behavior if students, teachers and school administrators know and understand that punishment are firm, fair and consistent. They act as motivators to students in order to improve students learning and academic performance.
On the contrary, discipline has more to do with teaching and self-control. Learning theories indicate that punishment was ineffective for producing significant and lasting behavioral change (Canter, 2000).
Ideally, punishments are an effective method of remediating individual misbehavior and therefore improving school order if they commensurate with the offence committed and must also be perceived by students as punishments (Okumbe, 1998). However in most secondary schools in Busiro County, some forms of punishments are unfair and undeserved like corporal punishment in schools involving severe canning of students. The effect of such harsh punishments on students‟ academic performance had not been given attention. This study therefore established whether students who are victims of such punishments are affected as regards their academic performance.
Docking (2000), carried out a study on application of punishments in schools in the United Kingdom and observed that, some punishments are appropriate and constructive while others are not desirable, baseless and instead intended for instilling fear. This idea was also in agreement with Canter (2000), who argued that although discipline remains one of the most common problems for educators, some punishments such as corporal punishments should not be used because no evidence suggests that they have produced better results academically, morally or that it improves school discipline. Instead students provoke resistance and resentments such as cyclical child abuse and pro-violent behavior. Students turn to lying about their behavior so as to escape punishments.
Cotton (2000), shares the same idea that, punishment can be an effective means of remediating individual behavior and therefore improving school order if they commensurate with the offense committed. Harsh punishments are ineffective as Cotton (2000) further argued. But what occurs on the ground in Busiro County is that, there are many secondary schools where a student who commits an offence, can easily gets admitted in another school rendering the punishment useless.
The effect of this practice on academic performance was of interest to this study.
Evertson, et al (2003), during their study on children punishment in elementary schools in the United Kingdom established that, small children tend to regard all punishment as unfair and undiscovered. However old students generally were found to regard punishment for misbehavior as fair and accepted, provided that the punishment fits the crime. But during the study on punishments in Botswana‟s secondary schools, Koereng (2004), observed that head teachers did not have control on some punishments even if cases could for example warrant suspension or expulsion. The consequence is that students can even misbehave in front of these powerless head teachers whom they know cannot take any action. Much as these acts of indiscipline attracted the attention of these researchers, they however neglected their effects on students‟ academic performance and a need for this study.
A critical analysis of the above studies shows that most researchers had concentrated on punishments as a means of controlling student‟s behavior and neglecting their effects on students‟ academic performance. This study therefore investigated the existing relationship between the administration of punishments and students academic performance.
Conclusively, review of related literature identified gaps in how time management by head teachers affects students‟ academic performance, how the administration of school rules and regulations by head teachers affects students‟ academic performance and how the administration of punishments to students by head teachers affect their general academic performance. These gaps identified further justified the need to carry out this study.
3.0. Introduction This chapter presented the research design, study population, research instruments, research procedure and methods of data analysis.
3.1. Research design The study was carried out using a cross-sectional survey design to investigate the attitudes, opinions and feelings as well as experiences of teachers, students and head teachers of the private secondary schools of Busiro County. Cross sectional survey was appropriate because extensive data could be collected at one point in time and it was very economical (Gall & Meredith, 2003).
Cross-sectional survey was also appropriate because data could be collected from a cross section of a population in a short time and then results generalized to represent the entire population of the study (Amin, 2005).
3.2. Study area Research was carried out four private secondary schools of Busiro County in Wakiso District.
This area was chosen because it has over 20 private secondary schools with both boys and girls from different religious affiliations. These private secondary schools also compete in students‟ academic performance through the Uganda National Examinations Board at national level. In these selected private secondary schools, all school activities are similar like in any other school in the country and therefore the results obtained have been generalized to represent other schools
3.3. Population and Sample The parent populations for this study were the students and staff of over 30 private secondary schools in Busiro County out of which four schools were selected purposively so as to include single sex and mixed schools. Purposive sampling was used because it economizes time and specific information can be obtained at a much reduced cost and time (Kothari, 2004). Four head teachers of the selected four private schools were sampled. These four schools were selected as the study wanted to make an in-depth analysis about discipline and students academic performance. The selected schools were Budo S.S.S, Sumaya Girls School, Mugwanya Summit S.S and Creamland Campus of St.Lawrence Schools. A total of 340 students were sampled out of the total of 2150 students in the four selected schools who were given questionnaires and all were returned fully filled for analysis. According to Krejcie and Morgan (1970), when the population size is 2200, the required sample size is 338. Therefore for best results, the study used the sample size of 340. The table below summarizes the distribution of sample;
Table 3.1 showing sample distributions
3.4. Sampling technique Purposive sampling was used to get the sample of students from senior four and senior six as it allowed the researcher to include subjects with specific needed information in the sample. This was supported by Gall and Meredith (2003), who argued that specific information is obtained through employing purposive sampling in any study. This method was used because it economizes time and reliable information was obtained at a much reduced cost and time (Kothari, 2004). After identifying the sample frame, random sampling was used where all students in senior four and senior six were having equal chances of being selected. This is because the study wanted such students with good time spent in these schools and also who are mature enough and therefore had knowledge of their schools‟ operation and thus would provide the required information.
3.5. Research Instruments: The following instruments were used;
3.5.1. Questionnaires The questionnaire was the main instrument of data collection in this study, which was structured, and self-administered. The researcher designed questionnaires for the students in the selected schools. These structured questionnaires were administered to the students whose views were obtained, opinions and attitudes on how discipline management influences students‟ academic performance. Structured questionnaires are simple to administer and relatively cheaper to analyze (Kothari, 2004). A questionnaire was also preferred as the main instrument in this study because it is easy to use on a large number of subjects. The questionnaire is attached (Appendix
3.5.2. Interview guides An interview guide (Appendix B), was prepared to assist the researcher collect data through face to face interviews that were conducted with the teachers and head teachers of the selected schools in Busiro County. The purpose of the interview was to solicit views concerning discipline management and academic performance. According to Kahn and Connell (1957), in Marshall (1995), interviews are a conversation with purpose and therefore data is collected easily. Interviews also have greater flexibility and opportunity to restructure questions (Kothari, 2004). Interview guides were used because they assisted the interviewer to remain focused during probing time for deeper information.