Factors affecting the implementation of the annexed early childhood education centers in primary schools in Lusaka district, Zambia: the case of Mumuni zone.
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The purpose of this study was to evaluate factors affecting the implementation of annexed Early Childhood Education centres in primary schools in Lusaka district, Zambia: The case of Mumuni Zone. The main research objectives were to: explore the perceptions of teachers and parents in the implementation of the annexed Early Childhood Education in primary schools in Mumuni Zone, analyse the availability of appropriate facilities, equipment and qualified ECE teachers in Mumuni Zone, find out the challenges teachers and learners encounter in the implementation of ECE in primary schools and investigate best practices that could enhance effective implementation of ECE in primary schools in Mumuni Zone, in Lusaka district. One Education Standard Officer- Special Education who coordinated ECE activities at district level was interviewed to find out how ECE activities were being implemented in Mumuni Zone. The interviews also included five head teachers who were managing the annexed ECE centres in the zone. Ten teachers who were implementing ECE in the centres including ten parents who had their children attending ECE programme in the centres the researcher visited were also interviewed. This study used a case study design and qualitative research methods. Qualitative data was analyzed using comparative methods to identify emerging themes and categories. The results showed that the five ECE centres had trained ECE teachers though none of them had trained ECE assistants, caregivers and supervisors with ECE qualifications. The results also revealed that only two centres had small play parks mounted with inadequate equipment such as slides and merry go round. The absence of many educational resources such as science kit, text books, sufficient room, appropriate furniture for the learners, ECE specialists at district including proper libraries and unclear involvement of parents/communities indicated that ECE teachers where implementing the programme under difficult conditions. The major challenge was lack of consistent and adequate funding from the government. Although the findings revealed practices such as CPD meetings, learner screening and school networking, it was discovered that not all ECE teachers had an opportunity to attend seminars and conferences outside school arrangement. These findings have critical implications on effective implementation of annexed ECE in government primary schools. The researcher made four clear recommendations which were based on the findings of the study.
The University of Zambia