Parents to know next month where Grade 6 pupils will school, says CS

Ezekiel Machogu

Education CS Ezekiel Machogu, Germany Ambassador to Kenya Sebastian Groth and KIST Principal Sammy Kamau Waititu during the ground-breaking ceremony for the project promotion of youth employment and vocational training at Kiambu Institute of Science and Technology on November 8, 2022.

Photo credit: Lucy Wanjiru I Nation Media Group

The government is yet to make a final decision on the fate of Grade Six pupils who are set to sit for national examinations later this month under the Competent Based Curriculum (CBC) system.

Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu revealed that President William Ruto will announce in December whether the pioneer CBC class will proceed to junior secondary or will continue to the next grade in their respective primary schools.

“One of the areas we are working on is on transition of Grade Six learners to junior secondary schools and I am sure that the presidential working party will be able to give his excellency an initial report though their terms of reference is six months.

The exams are starting on November 28 and a major announcement concerning this will be made in December, either when I am announcing the examinations results of Grade 6 or before that his Excellency the President will have known what are the desires of Kenyans and make a pronouncement,” said the CS.

Mr Machogu spoke in Nanyuki Town, Laikipia County on Friday during a public engagement convened by the Presidential Working Party on Education Reforms which was led by the Rev. Prof Stephen Mbugua from the Catholic University of East Africa (CUEA).

The taskforce appointed by the President, which comprises educationists, is seeking views from Kenyans on the reforms they wish to be implemented by the Government towards improvement of the education sector.

Among the areas Kenyans are requested to give their views and recommendations are on the CBC curriculum and its affordability, transition of Grade Six learners to junior secondary schools and parental empowerment and engagement.

Besides giving views on basic education, the taskforce is also expected to widen its scope and collect views regarding governance and financing framework for TVET training and development, university education, research and training.

There has been rising concern among parents on whether the Grade Six learners will be admitted in secondary schools with parents blaming the Education Ministry for failing to announce a clear stand.

Some education stakeholders including Kenya Union of Post Primary Education (KUPPET) have been urging the Government to retain the learners in their current institutions even after writing the national examinations.

“Our stand as KUPPET is that we can have what we call Intermediate One and Intermediate Two.  This means after they sit for the Grade Six exam, they proceed in Grade Seven and Grade Eight as junior secondary students in the same schools they are currently in before they transit to high school after two years for Grade Eight and Grade Nine,” Laikipia County Executive Secretary Robert Miano told the taskforce in his presentation.

Some parents have argued that their children are too young and still require parental guidance before they join senior learners in secondary schools.

Though the attendance at the Nanyuki CDF on Friday recorded was low, some parents have been grumbling over the CBC system of education arguing that it was hurriedly implemented and has become a burden not only to parents but also to teachers who appear ill prepared to make the implementations.

“In the CBC education system, parents have become like learners, doing class assignments and duties that should be carried out by their children. In this kind of scenario, it is the parents who have been turned to learners on behalf of their children and it becomes difficult to identify pupils’ talents as per the goals of CBC,” said Ms Charity Karimi, a parent from Nanyuki Town.