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Leadership Skills Adopted by Principals in Enhancing Teachers' Retention in Private Secondary Schools in Machakos County, Kenya

Abstract

A most serious dilemma facing secondary school principals presently is that of keeping the school system staffed continuously with competent teachers and retaining those in service. Teachers easily leave the teaching profession to better paying jobs in other careers. The purpose of the study was to explore the leadership skills adopted by principals in enhancing teachers’ retention in private secondary schools in Matungulu East Sub County, Machakos, Kenya. The study was guided by five research questions that focused on the leadership skills adopted by principals in enhancing teachers’ retention in private secondary schools in Matungulu Sub County, the factors that contribute to teacher attrition, the challenges encountered by principals in enhancing teacher retention, ,ways in which principals’ leadership skills enhance teachers’ retention and the strategies adopted by principals in enhancing teachers’ retention in private Secondary Schools in Matungulu Sub County. The study made use of a Convergent Parallel Mixed Method Research Design in which the researcher simultaneously collected both quantitative and qualitative data and analyzed them concurrently. A Cross- Sectional survey and phenomenology design were used for the study. Six private secondary schools and six principals were used as samples while 100 teachers were selected as samples for the study. Data collection instruments were Questionnaires for teachers and Interview Guide for principals. The analysis was done using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) and presented using frequency distribution tables. Findings revealed that teacher attrition is caused by low salary. Many teachers choose to leave the teaching profession because of low salary scale they are placed on. Provision of teaching and learning materials was the leadership skills that principals adopted in enhancing teachers’ retention. A major challenge faced by principals in enhancing teachers’ retention was the inability to support teachers’ financially. The strategy adopted by principals to retain teachers was involvement of teachers in decision making. The study recommended that principals in private secondary schools Matungulu consider establishing income generating projects to raise some finances to augment teachers’ salaries

Key Words: Leadership skills, principals, teachers’ retention, private secondary schools, Machakos County.

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