Maintenance of Facilities. A Study of the Sanitation Facilities in Public Primary School in Kericho Municipality
Survey research design was used to assess sanitation facilities in public primary schools. The target population comprised of all standard seven pupils in seventeen (17) public primary schools in Kericho Municipality. A stratified random sampling technique was applied to obtain a sample of 292 standard seven pupils from 5 public primary schools. The sample comprised of 147 boys and 145 girls. Data was collected using questionnaire and observation checklists. The questionnaire was used to collect data from pupils while observation schedules were used by the researcher to collect data from the schools. Data was analysed using frequencies, percentages, means and pie charts.
Statement of the Problem
The Research Design
Sample Size and Sampling Procedures
Data Collection Instruments
Data Collection Procedures
Data Analysis and Presentations
CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Sanitation is a basic human right as ratified by most countries of the world in convection to the rights of a child (CRC) which states that children have a right to a safe environment that enhance learning, health and development of good citizens. The purpose of the study therefore was to assess the state of hygiene and maintenance of sanitation facilities and to determine if there were any differences in sanitation facilities per gender in public primary schools in Kericho Municipality. Survey research design was used to assess sanitation facilities in public primary schools. The target population comprised of all standard seven pupils in seventeen (17) public primary schools in Kericho Municipality. A stratified random sampling technique was applied to obtain a sample of 292 standard seven pupils from 5 public primary schools. The sample comprised of 147 boys and 145 girls. Data was collected using questionnaire and observation checklists. The questionnaire was used to collect data from pupils while observation schedules were used by the researcher to collect data from the schools. Data was analysed using frequencies, percentages, means and pie charts. The study concluded that the standard of maintenance of the sanitary facilities was below standard. Most facilities were in need of repair. The study recommended that the Ministry of Education should ensure that sanitation facilities meet National Standards and that these facilities are maintained in a regular manner. It is hoped that the study will lead to the improvement of sanitation facilities in public primary schools. The findings of this research will also assist the schools under study in planning, organizing and managing school sanitation facilities.
Keywords: Maintenance, sanitation facilities
The health, academic performance and retention rates of school going children is adversely affected by availability accessibility and quality of stimuli facilitation. Studies indicate that 400 million children have diminished learning abilities due to intestinal worm infestation (Hall et al, 2008). On the other hand, according to international research centre on water and sanitation (IRC, 2005) 75 percent of adolescent girls drop out of school due to lack of adequate private sanitation facilities in school. The school environment represents an important setting because many children’s social habits and behaviors are learned at school ( United Nations (UN) (2011). However, availability of sanitation facilities is a fundamental and indisputable component of the teaching and learning process. In which the learner would exploit and maximize potential for learning. Since inadequate sanitation facilities make it difficult for pupils to concentrate, and for teachers to teach efficiently, which has been caused by failure to comply with the health and safety standards guidelines Health related problems are also reported due to poor school sanitation facilities such as diarrhea, worm infestation; typhoid which leads to student discomfort and psychological stress.
Health is compromised in a dirty and worn out sanitation facility, unventilated toilets, and broken doors, where pupils may be prone to disease such as cholera and diarrhea. The hygienic management of human excretes refuse and waste water, the control of disease vectors and provision of washing facilities for personal and domestic hygiene is essential so as to avoid water borne diseases as cholera and typhoid (UNICEF 2010).
The quality of the school shapes the attitude of teachers and learners whereby their attitude affects the learning behavior and performance. Blumende (2001) adds that decline in quality of education cannot be ignored by anyone as education is an instrument to societal transformation and development. It’s through good interpersonal relationships in schools that good teaching and learning processes be achieved so that orphans, those with disabilities and those with special needs are catered for.
Statement of the Problem
With the introduction of Free Primary Education by the Kenyan Government in 2003, many challenges have been experienced such as; over stretched learning facilities, overcrowding in schools, high costs of equipment for the special needs leading to internal inefficiency making the school sanitation facilities strained UNICEF (2004). Although policy intervention vary depending on the setting, countries have been facing challenges in scaling up worldwide policies and sustaining policy intervention with limited budgets (Oseji and Okolo, 2011; WHO, 2011). A look at the government policies and publication does not indicate budgetary allocations made to maintain infrastructure provision or maintenance. The safety standards manual (2009) replaced the Ministry of Education circular (2001) that previously defined health and safety standards in educational institutions. This study therefore systematically assessed the sanitation facilities in public primary schools in Kericho Municipality. This study may therefore lead to the improvement of sanitation facilities. It may also form a base on which, other scholars can develop their studies. The findings of this research may also assist the schools under study in planning, organizing and managing school sanitation facilities. It may further help the schools to bench mark current policies and practices against current legislative requirements and best practices. It may help schools to meet legal obligation under sanitation facilities at work (Act, 2005). International guidelines on sanitation facilities government policies, National Health Policy MOPH / IMSE, 2009.
School WASH interventions are to improve overall sanitation, hygiene and daily water intake in both educational and non-educational environments. Many children in both developing and developed nations spend time absent from schools due to diseases contracted within the school environment United Nations UN, (2011). In which Minds 2006 concurs that in 2002, a national survey of urban schools teachers, 26% of Chicago teachers and more than 30 % of Washington DC teachers, reported health related problems due to poor school sanitation facility. However this study will look into hygiene and maintenance of sanitation in public primary schools in Kenya.
The international bodies as UNICEF, WHO among others have been active in spear heading, WASH campaigns across the world especially developing countries like Asia and Africa. Studies indicate that 272 million schools days are lost by children due to diarrhea annually (Hutton et al, 2004). This has great impact on academic performance. The availability of water and sanitation facilities in schools have reduce diarrhea and hygiene related diseases amongst school going children (Curtis et al; 2003; Pruss et al, 2008)
Studies from the developing world indicate that 100% of annual soil transmitted worm infestation cases are attributed by inadequate sanitation and hygiene (Hall et al, 2008). This is has shown to be a cause of death for 1.8 people annually (WHO, 2010) whom most of them are from developing countries. The school environment is an important sector to explore due to the social and health influences schools have on children. In addition, the school environment is important for interventions aimed at mitigating infectious diseases spread because children may be introduced to more and more strains of pathogens in the school, due to the fact that more children are present in contact with and using the facilities. This exposure makes the school environment efficacious for performing. Greene et al, (2012) these then affects the pupils’ participation leading to psychological instability which this study will explore.
Rukunga and Mutethia (2006), opines that school hygiene and sanitation education are areas of concern in as far as promotion of hygiene and sanitation act are concerned. This is because it would lead to pupil absenteeism from school due to common preventable diseases such as diarrhea. Sanitation facilities are therefore fundamental for promoting hygiene and proper behavior which would enhance good participation on state of sanitation facilities.
The aim of Universal Primary Education (U.P.E) is to ensure that all Kenyan children eligible for primary school have opportunity to enroll and remain in school to learn and acquire quality basic education and skills. The Kenyan government introduced F.P.E in 2003 which increased enrollment of children from 5.9 million in 2002 to 7.2 million in formal schools alone (Sessional paper No 1 of 2005). This has equally led to strained physical infrastructure.
The Kenyan government finance instructional materials but has left the task of building and maintaining to the parents who seem reluctant to pay thus leading to strained sanitation facilities in place. As such, overcrowded sanitation facilities lead to less interaction and poor participation. However, F.P.E has exacerbated these conditions. It is for this reason that inadequate sanitation further leads to stress, absenteeism and low self-esteem (WHO, 2010).
The magnitude of challenge has been underscored by WHO which ascribes that 80% of all sickness and diseases is due to lack of drinking water and sanitation leading to diarrhea, cholera, malaria among others.
In Senegal pupils avoid school toilet use as they associate it with immorality and dangers such as presence of snakes, filth concentration, rapes and drug exchange. This shows the extent to which fear and psychological discomfort pupils have towards the state of sanitation facilities which this study will look into.
Equally in Africa there was a case in Lesotho where pupils were assaulted and bullied each other Brener, Lowry & Barrios, (2005). Further, many reasons to complain of low performance was noted such as poor hygiene practices among school children lack of safe drinking water, and absenteeism being high. Pupils would go back to their homes to drink water and use toilets and not return; as such there were high dropout rates. There is a positive correlation between education quality of life, good health and economic activity. Studies indicates that 50 % of child mortality in Uganda is due to poor hygiene and sanitation children being susceptible UNICEF / SIDA, (2002). Schools like the rest of Uganda’s infrastructure suffered a great deal of devastation during the 1970 and 1980 wars and political Upheaval .
However water and sanitation is below desired standards, only 29% of schools in the country have access to water and sanitary facilities. Where the MOEST (2003), rates Kenya in dangerous category where over 90% of primary schools in rural Kenya lack safe water and even the water needed for hand washing. Lack of separate toilets for maturing girls leads to frustration and ridicule by others thus imparting negatively on their perception of sanitation facilities. Sometime this leads to children having negative imagination on the toilets as they are filthy, congested, full of excrete and they are few. Such sanitation facilities lead to high incidence of diseases such as; worm infestation, typhoid or diarrhea. Indeed the environment of a child influences learning. WSP (2007) sanitation facilities have been cited as a factor that can push children particularly out of school, Water aid (2009). This claim has been supported by water and sanitation practitioners and organization. Lilonde, (2004) has written that poor sanitation limits attendance school dropouts and low literacy rates.
Hand washing with soap effectively reduces exposure to diarrhea-causing pathogens. Interventions to improve hygiene and sanitation conditions in schools within low-income countries have gained increased attention; however, their impact on schoolchildren's exposure to fecal pathogens has not been established (Greene, et al, 2012). This greatly affects on performance and retention of pupils.
A Study carried out in rural western Kenya showed that when children are actively engaged in WASH they lead to community adoption of good hygiene behaviors, leading to improved individual and community health (Gisore, 2013). This study assessed the hygiene and maintenance practices towards sanitation in public primary schools in Kericho Municipality.
The Research Design
A survey research was used in this study. This design was used to determine reasons or causes for the current status of the phenomenon under study. As a result of the cause-and-effect relationships, this research design does not permit manipulation of the variables (Patton, 2002). The design was adopted in this study because the cause, i.e. the independent variables was studied after they have exerted the effect on the dependent variable.
The study was conducted in Kericho County which is located south west of the Kenyan Rift Valley region. It lies between 350 -400 and latitude of 0230 South East between the Equator. Kericho County has a population of 758,339 according to 2009 census. The county comprises of six sub counties or constituencies namely: Kipkelion East and West, Ainamoi, Belgut, Sigowet, Soin and Buret. Most of the activities in Kericho are agricultural as it has adequate rainfall.It is one of the leading country’s tea exporters with high concentration of tea factories. It has a number of multinational tea companies among others. Ainamoi constituency has seven educational administrative zones namely; Municipality, Soin, Soliat, Ainamoi, Kapsaos and Koitaburot. The primary enrolment is 163,133. Teacher –pupil ration is 1: 33 public primary schools.