Developing a localised school safety and health manual for Sefula secondary school in Western Zambia

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Mubita, Kaiko
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The University of Zambia
This study proposes a localised approach to school safety and health management, using Sefula secondary school as a case study. In this regard, the aim of this study was to develop a localised school Safety and Health Manual by using ideas and practices of safety and health held by sampled participants of Sefula Secondary School. This aim was operationalised through the following objectives: (a) to assess the state of safety and health at Sefula Secondary School herein used as a case study (b) to establish ideas and practices of safety and health held by sampled participants of Sefula Secondary School (c) to develop a localised school safety and health manual for Sefula Secondary School based on items (a) and (b) above.The study sample consisted of 10 pupils, 7 teachers, 3 auxiliary staff from Sefula secondary school, 5 parents from Sefula community, 1 Education Standards Officer (ESO)from Mongu district education office and 1 Environmental Health Technologist (EHT) from Sefula clinic. Homogeneous purposive sampling was used to sample teachers, pupils and auxiliary staff, expert purposive sampling was used to select EHT and ESO while parents were selected using snow bowling. The study used an intrinsic case study research model. Data was collected using interview schedules, focus group discussion, observation and document review. Qualitative data collected was transcribed and analyzed as an ongoing process as themes and sub themes emerged. Moreover, a manual was proposed arising from the interpreted results, and such a manual reflects idiosyncratic hazards and risks of Sefula secondary school. The main findings showed that, in addition to generally familiar hazards common to such educational institutions, Sefula secondary school had a variety of safety and health concerns unique to that school environment, for example, poor sanitary conditions, floods, bad company, threats posed by the Sefula stream and Sefula forest and so on. The study also deduced that safety and health concerns inherent at this school needed local solutions if they were to be fully managed because some of them were influenced by socio-cultural aspects of the Sefula environment. The study concludes that a localised school safety and health manual is more responsive to the needs of an individual school like Sefula secondary as opposed to a generic manual prepared at national, provincial or district level. This is partly because a localised school safety manual deals with specific safety and health issues peculiar to a particular school. To this effect, the study recommends that individual schools should be allowed to devise their own safety and health manuals to effectively respond to local needs. Key words: Manual, School, School Safety, School Health
School safety and health management--Zambia , Schools manuals--Study and teaching--Zambia , Safety and health manuals --Study and teaching--Zambia