Factors Influencing Enrollment and Retention of Street Children in Primary Schools in Central Division, Kampala District, Uganda.


ABSTRACT:
The focuses on factors influencing enrollment and retention of street children in primary schools in central division, Kampala district especially the challenges to street children and education providers that hinder enrolling and completing school and attaining self-sustainable development.
Maslow’s (1960) theory of hierarchy of needs and Tinto (1975) interactive model of student retention informed the study. The basis was that when physiological needs are met, higher needs are sought. Most of the street children live for survival. A survey research design was used to collect data.
Results indicate that multiple factors influenced street children enrollment and retention. Street children are ready to take part in all learning activities and acquiring skills which would help them earn a living and fulfill their life aspirations including employment but they have many learning needs required to enhance self –esteem, assertiveness and positive outlook.
It was established that quality accelerated education delivered through a relevant curriculum would enable such children have a decent life and contribute to national development. Results also indicated that school- based factors like facilities and environment have a positive correlation above 0.557 affecting street children enrollment and retention implying 55.7 % of street children enrollment and retention in Kampala division is explained by variation in school based factors.
Furthermore, teacher’s competences with six exclusive items by factor analysis and loading had a positive relation from 0.557 to 0.607; implying that of the six factors’-loading of teacher competences influencing street children enrolment and retention can explain the variation by 55.7 to 60.7%. Teachers’ attitudes and behaviors affected street children enrollment and retention by55.7% of variations.
Recommendations are; school-based facilities and environment be regulated to attract street children to be enrolled and remain till completion of primary school cycle to attain sustainable development, teachers’ competence is built and that they are sensitized on special needs of street children, especially the strategies of active teaching/ learning and on creating a learner-friendly environment in order to keep children off the streets.
Teachers and social workers should avoid being harsh and unfriendly to create friendly environment for the street children.