Socio-cultural Factors Affecting Gender Mainstreaming in the Ministry of Education: A Case of Embu and Tharaka-Nithi County

Lucy Karimi Kirima


The purpose of the study was to establish socio-cultural factors affecting gender mainstreaming in the ministry of education. The study used descriptive survey research design. The target population consisted of the county and sub-county gender coordinators and the heads of public secondary schools. Embu and Tharaka-Nithi was selected purposively because of low transition rate from primary to secondary schools. A total of 211 respondents were sampled through purposive and random sampling techniques. A questionnaire and an interview schedule were used to collect primary data. Descriptive statistics were used to summarize the properties of the mass data that were collected from the respondents. Factor analysis method was used to determine the factors that were used in the study namely; strength of strategies, gender mainstreaming strategies, gender policy in education, gender disparities in education and understanding of the policy which were used in logistic regression analysis. Logit regression was used to determine the effect of the factors on gender mainstreaming. Among the five factors, only one factor (gender disparities in education) affected gender mainstreaming negatively. All other predictor variables: strength of strategies; gender mainstreaming strategies; gender policy in education and understanding of gender policy in education affected gender mainstreaming positively. From the findings, it is evident that Gender policy in education is not being implemented effectively in the public secondary schools and there are several factors affecting gender mainstreaming in the education sector which includes; inadequate commitment from top-down to the institution, gender concept was not well understood, inadequate training and awareness for teachers, gender imbalance and inadequate training for Board of Governors and Parents Teachers Association, inadequate resources and socio-cultural factors. The study concluded that the school heads, teachers and management were ill-prepared for the policy implementation, there is inadequate support, training and awareness. Also, there is poor system of monitoring and evaluation. More so, policies and strategies outlined for secondary schools are appropriate and satisfactory but requires balancing between boys and girls.

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