SELF-ESTEEM AND ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE LEVELS OF HIV/AIDS ORPHANED PRIMARY SCHOOL PUPILS IN CHILDREN’S HOMES IN NYERI SOUTH SUB-COUNTY, KENYA

ABSTRACT
Since the first case of HIV/AIDS was diagnosed in Kenya in 1984, it is estimated that over 1.5 million people have died of AIDS related illness, resulting to 1.1 million children who are HIV/AIDS orphans. A parent’s death usually affects children’s psychological well-being that includes self-esteem. Children who experience low self-esteem may have poor adaptation to human functioning and life experiences. This may in turn affect their academic performance. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate self-esteem and academic performance levels of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes of Nyeri South Sub- county. The research adopted the descriptive survey design. The population of the study was 190 HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils from five children’s homes who were in class one to eight in Nyeri South Sub-county. The accessible population was 53 HIV/AIDS orphaned children in class six to eight and five caretakers who were purposively selected from children’ home that had HIV/AIDS orphaned pupils. Since the accessible population was small, all the 53 HIV/AIDS orphaned pupils and five caretakers were involved in the study. HIV/AIDS orphans and caretakers were obtained through purposive sampling. Data was collected using a pupil’s questionnaires, a self-esteem scale and interview schedules for caretakers. The face of validity of the instruments was ascertained by getting advice from experts and incorporating the suggestions given. Reliability was established by conducting a pilot study in a children’s home in Nyeri North sub-county using Cronbach’s alpha coefficient. A reliability coefficient of 0.84 was obtained and accepted for the study. Both inferential and descriptive statistics were used to analyze data. Consequently, frequencies, means, percentages, and t-test statistics were used. This was aided by the Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS) version 18.0 for windows. An analysis of the major findings indicated that self-esteem and academic performance levels of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils were moderately low, girls being more predisposed to lower self-esteem and academic performance. The findings of this study may assist the Ministry of Education and Children’s department to establish programmes that may address the needs of HIV/AIDS orphans. HIV/AIDS orphans may be helped to adjust better and have a sense of belonging. The school administrators, teachers, guardians and non-governmental organizations may use them to understand the HIV/AIDS orphans better.

CHAPTER ONE
INTRODUCTION
Background of the Study
According to UNAIDS/WHO (2013), AIDS epidemic global update, 32.7 million people were estimated to be living with HIV globally. Out of this number of people, 30.2 million were adults and 2.5 million were children under 15 years. There were 2.6 million new infections in 2013 of which 1.6 millions were adults while 430,000 were children under 15 years. Moreover, there were 2.3 million people who died from AIDS of which 1.8 million were adults and 0.4 millions were children. In the sub-Saharan Africa, there were 22.6 million people living with HIV thus making it the most seriously affected region, with AIDS remaining the leading cause of death. HIV epidemics in Sub-Sahara Africa are giving rise to a very large number of orphaned children. Between 1990 and 2012, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS found that the total number of children younger than 18 years who had lost one or both parents to AIDS had increased 5500 to 18.4millions (UNAIDS/WHO,2012).

There were 1.8 million orphans due to HIV/AIDS in Kenya (UNAIDS/WHO, 2012). According to the National AIDS Control Council (2012), the number of people who were HIV positive had increased to 3.3 million in Kenya. A study by the Government of Kenya (2013) showed that there were about 2.7 million children under 18 who were orphans of which 2.1 million were due to AIDS illness. According to the report of the Ministry of Health Kenya (2013), as of July, 2013, the HIV/AIDS data in Kenya was as shown in Table 1.

National AIDS Control Council (2013) postulates that HIV/AIDS orphan hood has continued to be a major challenge to our social-economic development. Since the first case was diagnosed in Kenya in 1984, it is estimated that over 2.7 million people have succumbed to AIDS-related illnesses, resulting in 1.8 million of school going children left as HIV/AIDS orphans. It is also estimated that 3.3 million people in the Kenya were living with HIV. Parental death due to AIDS during childhood may have a lasting negative impact on all aspects of children’s life (National Aids Control Council, 2013). HIV/AIDS can affect pupils when their parents die from HIV/AIDS related illnesses, they may have no one to provide for their basic needs and those of their siblings thus may drop out of school. Moreover, their self-esteem may be affected because of the stigma that is associated with HIV/AIDS and this may in return affect their academic performance (Odiwuor, 2006)

Ayier (2013) noted that in the Mediera Europe orphans and abandoned children were initially confined to orphanages. Lindsey (1994) indicates that Charles Brace founded the children’s Aids society and developed the placing out system where children were distributed to families and foster homes to be taken care of, increasing their sense of self-respect and chances of schooling. LJUNGUIST (2003), states that almost throughout Sub Sahara Africa, there have been traditional systems in place to take care of children who lose their parents for various reasons. However, the spread of HIV has eroded this traditional practice by overstretching its caring capacity by large numbers of orphans needing support and care. HIV also undermines the caring capacity of families and communities by deepening the poverty due to the high cost of medical treatment and funerals.

Hussein (2008) observes that the magnitude of the problem of HIV/AIDS orphans and vulnerable children is being felt in Kenya today than ever before. Most of these children are deprived of basic needs besides being prone to different forms of abuse and exploitation. The situation is made worse by high level of poverty. This situation diminishes their rights. This is depicted by increased cases of child abuse and exploitation in some cases by the very people who are expected to protect them. Csete (2001) says that some of the children interviewed in Kenya said they had to withdraw from school so they could earn money for the family or care for a sick relative or in some cases find livelihoods on the streets or in domestic labor. Csete (2001) reports that almost all the orphans had faced obstacles in inheriting the land they were entitled to and many did not have good enough information of HIV/AIDS to understand why their parents had suffered and died to combat the stigma they faced. Epstein (20120 reports that in South Africa AIDS has perpetuated the stigma associated with the disease, with obvious AIDS victims being said they were suffering from ulcers, tuberculosis or typhoid and orphans being told that their parents ‘had gone away’ or had been bewitched by a jealous neighbor. Shame and silence is the primary reason for high prevalence rates in South Africa.

According to a study done by Odiwuor (2006) in Homa Bay, Muranga and Nyeri District children orphaned by HIV/AIDS have various problems. For instance, they are isolated by other children because of the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS. They also face denial, lack of parental attention, emotional problems like low self-esteem and self-pity. Self-esteem influences real life achievement (Forgas & William, 2002). In effect, pupils with high self-esteem tend to slightly exaggerate their ability, competence or adequacy whereas low self-esteemed pupils judge themselves harshly (Wittrock, 1991). For this reason, high self-esteemed pupils unlike low self- esteemed pupils take more responsibility for their academic successes than for their failures (Wittrock, 1991). According to Boggiano (1992), high academic ability and performance are both predictors of self-esteem during primary school. High esteem during school has two important effects among young adults: it directly predicts high esteem in adulthood and it has direct effect on further educational accomplishment and occupational status (Adams & Gollaita, 1983). Parents and educators have been faced by the problem of low academic achievement in HIV/AIDS. According to Adams and Gollalta (2005), HIV/AIDS orphaned pupils ought to be helped to do well in school by establishing positive peer relationship and maintaining a supportive aspect to assure high self-esteem.

Statement of the Problem
In Kenya today, there is an increase of HIV/AIDS orphan hood. HIV/AIDS orphaned pupils experience physical, psychological and social problems. Physical problems include shelter, clothing, proper beddings and land and property rights. They have psychological problems such as isolation by other children because of the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS. In addition, they have emotional problems which may result in low self-esteem and self pity. Some of them grieve secretly and as a result have socialization problems. They are also unable to relate closely with peers. These physical, psychological and social problems may affect their self-esteem and also their academic performance. In an attempt to help the HIV/AIDS orphans, guidance and counseling is used. Therefore, given that in Nyeri South Sub-county there were HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in Children’s homes, it was necessary to establish the self- esteem and academic performance levels of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes and the effects of guidance and counseling on self-esteem and academic performance of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils .

Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study was to establish self-esteem and academic performance levels of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes of Nyeri South Sub-county, Kenya.

Objectives of the Study
The study was guided by the following objectives:

i) To establish the self-esteem levels of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes in Nyeri South Sub-county.

ii) To establish the academic performance levels of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes in Nyeri South Sub-county

iii) To determine whether gender differences exist in self-esteem and academic performance levels of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes in Nyeri South Sub-county

iv) To determine the effects of guidance and counseling on self-esteem and academic performance of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in Nyeri South Sub-county.

Questions of the Study
The research was based on the following questions:

i) What is the level of self-esteem of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes in Nyeri South Sub-county.

ii) What is the level of academic performance of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes in Nyeri South Sub-county

iii) Is there gender differences in self-esteem and academic performance levels of HIV/AIDS orphan pupils in children’s homes in Nyeri South Sub-county

iv) What is the effect of guidance and counseling on self-esteem and academic performance of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in Nyeri South Sub-county.

Significance of the Study
The findings of this study may hopefully be used by school administration and teachers to understand the problem faced by HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils. As a result, they may be able to identify alternative positive measures that can be used by teachers and caretakers towards them for instance understanding their personal background that may influence self- esteem and academic performance. This may help the teachers to establish and strengthen guidance and counseling programmes in schools. The changes so instituted, may hopefully cater for the needs of the HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils with regard to self-esteem and academic performance, with the ultimate aim of improving their self-esteem and academic performance. Also, the Ministry of Education, non-governmental organizations and Children’s department may also use the findings of the study to institute changes in education sector so as to incorporate self-esteem and improvement of academic performance among HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils. The study findings may therefore guide the teachers, guardians and other care takers on matters concerning the needs of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils. The study findings may also provide a base on which other researches might be carried on this subject.

Scope of the Study
The study was confined to HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils from five children’s homes and the care takers of the five children’s homes and in Nyeri South Sub-county. Class six to eight pupils were studied alongside caretakers in five children’s homes. The respondents in the selected classes were preferred because they were thought to be quite familiar with their family backgrounds and could therefore give their true feelings when responding to the items in the questionnaire. The study focused on self-esteem and academic performance levels of HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes of Nyeri South Sub-county.

Limitations of the Study
The study was limited by the fact that some pupils and care takers found the study to be sensitive especially due to ethical issues involved. They were therefore suspicious as to the purpose of the study. The researcher however, assured them of confidentiality of the information provided. The researcher also reaffirmed that the information obtained was purely for research purposes. The other study limitation was that the findings of the study could only be generalized to the sub- county under study and that further generalization to other sub-counties should be done with caution.

Assumptions of the Study
This study assumed that:

i) The self-esteem and academic performance levels of the HIV/AIDS orphaned primary school pupils in children’s homes have been contributed by parental roles.

ii) That the pupils knew precisely that their parents died of HIV/AIDS.

iii) Respondents gave honest responses in the questionnaire.

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Item Type: Kenyan Material  |  Attribute: 86 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
Format: MS Word  |  Price: KSh900  |  Delivery: Within 30Mins.
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