President Uhuru Kenyatta has announced plans to revamp and equip schools in preparation for the reopening in January 2021. Some of the measures lined up include the building of more than 12,500 classrooms to ensure that progressive reopening of schools is on course.
In his state of the nation address in Parliament yesterday, the Head of State lamented the congestion in the public schools saying much needs to be done within the next few weeks to ensure that schools are prepared for the reopening amidst the pandemic.
He said that classrooms and dormitories were few and some were in deplorable conditions making it even harder to allow the resumption of learning. He ordered the Ministry of Education to also facilitate the making of the 2021 education calendar within the next two weeks to ensure that learners get back to class.
“There is an urgent need for construction and equipping of more dormitories, classrooms and other amenities to facilitate further ease of learning for our children,” the President said.
Uhuru reiterated his request to the members of Parliament to chip in and reinforce efforts by the government by channeling funds to schools through the National Government Constituency Development Fund. The fund, which is used for short-term mitigation approaches is expected to be utilised in the purchase of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) such as masks, sanitisers, providing water among other requirements.
Uhuru called the ministries of education, transport and infrastructure to provide building guidelines that will allow the learners to observe containment measures upon resuming learning.
“Through a combination of interventions, both policy and financial, involving the Ministry of Education, county governments and MPs, we shall have the necessary resources to address the infrastructure gap in our education sector conclusively within the next 24 months,” he said.
The President emphasised earlier declaration by Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha by saying that the state was committed to ensuring that all learners head back to class regardless of their situation.
“No child will be left behind, even those that have regrettably transitioned into being young parents. A nation’s future is its children. As custodians of and trustees for future generations, it is our duty to protect, nurture and mould our children into responsible citizens,” he said.
He gave an assurance that the roll-out of the Competency-Based Corriculum (CBC) was on course and the State was confident of seeing 100 per cent transition.
“The journey to replace the 8-4-4 system with the new fit-for-purpose curricula is well underway and refinements are being undertaken in the course of its implementation. The next frontier in the quest to improve education in Kenya is enhancing quality of education, both in terms of physical structure as well as content,” he stated.