ASSESSMENT OF COPING STRATEGIES BY ORPHANED LEARNERS AND THEIR ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT IN SELECTED PRIMARY SCHOOLS IN KENYA (Published)
Despite the vulnerable status of the orphaned learners, every child in Kenya has a right to quality education that should lead to good performance and achievement of Universal Primary Education (UPE). This study assessed coping strategies by exceptional orphaned learners and their academic achievement in Winam Division in Kisumu County. The theory underpinning the study was self- efficacy theory by Albert Bandura (1994). Descriptive survey design was used in the study. The study population consisted of 43 head teachers, 516 teachers and 3042 orphaned learners in 43 mixed public primary schools. Data was collected by questionnaire, interview schedule and document analysis. Quantitative data was analyzed using frequency counts, means, percentages and standard deviation. Data from the interviews were organized into themes and sub-themes as they emerged through the objective. The study established that; most orphaned learners stay with older siblings, lacked some basic needs and lacked guidance from adults. Hard work, personal ambition, role models from their schools and guidance from teachers were the most outstanding factors that enabled orphaned learners to perform well in their academics. The study recommends that grandparents who care for the orphans be supported financially by the government. The Ministry of Health in collaboration with other stake holders should launch health and nutrition program in schools where the program has not yet been started. Life skills education should be examined like any other subject in the curriculum. There should be a vote head under FPE to cater for orphaned learners’ school requirements. School administration should link orphaned learners who perform well with sponsors to ensure that they continue with their secondary education
Keywords: Academic Achievement, Assessment, Coping Strategies, Kenya, Orphaned Learners, Primary schools.