An Investigative Study on the Impact of COVID-19 on the Preparedness of Candidates for the ECDE 2020 Examination
A case Study of Samburu Sub-County in Kenya
The outbreak of COVID-19 on 13th March 2020 greatly affected the education sector in Kenya due to the abrupt closure of all learning institutions. The candidates preparing for ECDE 2020 examinations were also affected by the closure of their colleges. The study examines the impact of COVID-19 on the preparedness of candidates for the ECDE 2020 examinations. The research objectives of the study were to: 1) To examine how the outbreak of COVID-19 has affected the payment of college fees among students that sat for the ECDE 2020 examination, 2) To determine whether the preparation for ECDE 2020 examination was determined by the payment of college fees, the outbreak of COVID-19 and completion of syllabus, 3) To find out as to whether the college students adhere to the measures taken by the Ministry of Health on the prevention of COVID-19 and 4) To examine how the outbreak of COVID-19 affected the students’ preparedness to sit for ECDE 2020 examination. The study adopted a descriptive research design with 185 participants representing 61.6% females and 38.4% males purposely selected to participate in the study since they had registered for the ECDE 2020 examination. The data was collected using a Structured Student Questionnaire (SSQ) and analyzed using SPSS version 26.0. A larger proportion of the candidates (Mean= 3.31 and SD= 1.29) felt that the closure of colleges to prevent the spread of COVID-19 did not give them enough time to prepare for ECDE 2020 examinations. The test of Chi-square χ (1,185) = 72.268, p = .00 indicated that the outbreak of Coronavirus significantly affected the payment of college fees by the candidates. The chi-Square χ (3, 185) = 56.022, p = .00 also indicated that the candidates were not well prepared for ECDE 2020 examination because most tutors did not complete the syllabus due to the abrupt closure of all learning institutions in Kenya. The analysis of a multiple regression model at 0.05 level of significance, F (5,102) = 6.570, p =.00 with 24.4% of variance indicated that the Source of finance for the course of study (X1), Completion of the course syllabus by tutors (X2), Clearance of college fees (X3), the reason for not clearing college fees (X4) and effect of the outbreak of COVID-19 on examination preparation (X5) had a significant impact on the candidates' preparedness for the ECDE 2020 examinations. The study recommends the provision of bursaries subsidized tuition fees for ECDE students to allow them to fully concentrate on their training. There is a need for sensitization and enhancement measures of prevention of COVID-19 by the ministry of health in all learning institutions in the country.
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