Support CBC to reap from it

Pupils at Mboto Sunrise Primary School work on their competency-based curriculum assignment under a tree

Pupils at Mboto Sunrise Primary School work on their competency-based curriculum assignment under a tree in September last year. 

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

The Ministry of Education is undergoing a crucial transition as it gears towards full implementation of the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC). 

The critical change presents a departure from the 8-4-4 system. It emphasises learners' core competencies focusing on their talents and what they can do rather than rote learning. The implementation has made commendable strides in the face of resistance that typically characterises any major change.

In the recent past, the country has been grappling with a painful unemployment crisis, a disintegration in the value system leading to evils such as corruption and a mismatch between skills taught in school and those needed in the job market. Something has been going awry and a generation's future left hanging in balance. 

CBC focuses on the learner's core competencies and emphasizes on education rather than schooling as well as creating a healthy balance between summative and formative exams to ensure the success of every learner.

21st-century skills

With the intentional emphasis on 21st-century skills such as digital literacy, creating a value system, and focusing on flexible and varied career pathways in line with one's talents, critical thinking and problem-solving CBC is likely to be the missing part of the jigsaw in our education system. 

It focuses on nurturing a holistic individual in character and skills in line with the tenets of the Constitution and the Kenya Vision 2030. Creating an individual who is well equipped to solve real-life problems and become their own boss, a paragon of morality with tremendous character and a creative person able to acclimatise to the world of work armed with modern skills.

The essence of the new curriculum is the much-needed silver bullet in a system that has been going south having been overtaken by events.

The implementation is however fraught with a myriad of challenges that call for urgent streamlining. Biting teacher shortage, poor infrastructure or lack of it, unavailability of textbooks and capitation are some of the challenges that must be dealt with now.

Mr Mwirichia is a high school teacher. [email protected].