Influence of Gender Norms on Education Participation among Secondary School Girls in Homa Bay County
Keywords:Attitudes, Education Participation, Gender Norms, Patriarchal Norms, Secondary School Girls
Several studies in sub-Saharan Africa have looked at the impact of gender norms on the education of girls. Nevertheless, on a national level, limited studies have attempted to directly investigate the girls’ views and their experiences of these norms. Therefore, this study is intended to investigate the influence of gender norms on the education participation of secondary school girls in Homa Bay County (HBC). The study adopted a concurrent transformative research design, majorly quantitative with an embedded qualitative bit. The population of interest comprised all secondary school girls in HBC. Purposive sampling was applied to limit the sample population to the three sub-counties of Rachwonyo South, Rachwonyo East, and Ndhiwa. Solvin’s formula was used to arrive at a sample size of 393. Respondents were selected using a proportionate stratified sampling method. Additionally, one guidance/counselling teacher, one principal, and one area education director from the participating schools were purposefully included in the study to provide complementary qualitative data. Data from female students was collected by means of questionnaires. Interview schedules were used to collect data from the other participants. The validity of the test was established through expert input and the adaptation of tests used in similar studies. Instrument reliability was confirmed by a test-retest test that returned a correlation coefficient of 0.766. The quantitative data was coded and analysed using SPSS version 24.0. Linear regression was run between education participation and gender norms, and the outcome was an equation model. Qualitative data provided evaluative references in the discussion. The relationship between the independent variables and the dependent variable was found to be statistically significant (t = 1.295, p <.001). The study found that the gender norms of most secondary school girls in Homa Bay County are disposed to unquestioning submissiveness to men and over-involvement in domestic chores. The study recommends that school authorities use parental gatherings to create awareness that focuses girls’ attention on career development. Interventions to improve girls’ education participation will benefit from these findings. Similar studies are needed to establish the plausibility of generalizing the findings beyond Homa Bay County.
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