Challenges Inhibiting the Participation of Girls in Stem Education: A Case of 5 A-Level Schools in Gwanda Central in Zimbabwe. (Published)
Student engagement in educational experiences is a desired dream of every community, while persistent participation in STEM education, especially by the girl child is a milestone for future prospects. Laws and policies have been crafted to harness every possibility that ensures that girls access and succeed in education and training, like, if not better than their male counterparts. This study investigates challenges that coalesce to impede girls from taking up science subjects in 5 A-level schools in Gwanda central. The study employed a qualitative case study design. A purposive sample of 25 science subjects teachers, 5 heads of schools and 50 students was used. Focus Group Discussion (FDG) was conducted with the selected teachers and students while interviews were conducted with the heads of schools to obtain information for discursive analysis and interpretation. The findings of the study were that lack of science centres and low self confidence among girls fostered low uptake of STEM education path. Recommendations were that orientation of girls towards heavy sciences should be progressively introduced from lower grades, membership of students to International Olympia should be seriously considered, while sponsorship of girls at science-biased learning institutions has to be normative.