Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)

First Supervisor/Advisor

Fortidas Bakuza


Institute for Educational Development, East Africa


The persistence of dropouts among female students in public secondary schools in Songea Municipal necessitates an investigation of strategies used by the School Management Team (SMT) in handling warning signs of female students who are in danger of dropping out. The study explored the commitment and approachability of the SMT in recognizing and preventing the warning signs that lead to female students’ dropout (FSD). The study used a case study design and a qualitative approach to collect data from 18 purposively selected respondents. The study gathered information by interviewing the head of school, guidance and counseling, and discipline master. Additionally, the researcher conducted a focus group discussion with 6 members of SMT and 9 student leaders. Moreover, documents such as guidance and counseling files were analyzed. The findings indicate that SMT uses school-setting, home-setting, and student-related, factors to identify warning signs for female students dropping out of school. The result shows that strengthening guidance and counseling units, improving feeding programs, creating a conducive learning environment, and providing female role models to helps to control FSD. However, it was also found that SMT faces difficulties, including a lack of training, detrimental cultural practices from the community surrounding the school, and insufficient funding from the government. Therefore, SMT should not be the only one to be blamed for failing to control FSD. Therefore, the government and other stakeholders should strongly come together to get rid of all the challenges facing SMT during identification and controlling FSD.