We have no money to run schools, head teachers say

Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha assesses  new desks and the sitting arrangement at St Teresa’s Isanjiro Girls Secondary School in Malava, Kakamega County, on October 23, 2020.


Photo credit: Isaac Wale | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Kenya Secondary Schools Heads Association chairman Kahi Indimuli said schools depend on student’s fees payment to run most of their operations including boarding maintenance.
  • Mr Indimuli said the money sent by the government a week ago was very little and is not enough to run schools.

Public schools heads want the Ministry of Education to direct parents to pay school fees for their children who reported back a week ago,  saying majority of learners did not pay for second term.

Secondary schools heads who spoke to the Nation yesterday said most schools are unable to maintain students in the institutions of learning as they are facing a financial crunch.

Kenya Secondary Schools Heads Association (Kessha) chairman Kahi Indimuli said schools depend on student’s fees payment to run most of their operations including boarding maintenance.

“Principals are facing hard times because without funds, it’s literally impossible to feed learners and cater for their boarding requirements,” said Mr Indimuli.

Last week, Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha directed school heads to allow students back without school fees.

The CS asked principals to ensure that no child is sent home because of school fees whether in private or public schools.

However, school heads say parents have taken advantage of the CS directive and released their children without fees. Mr Indimuli said some parents have taken advantage of the ministry’s directive to neglect their duties.

 “Parents must meet their obligations and pay their children’s second term school fees,” said Mr Indimuli.

For those in boarding schools, Mr Indimuli said parents are aware that they are required to pay boarding fees while those in day schools, learners only pay for their lunch.

He revealed that some students had not cleared their first term school fees before closure in March which has caused schools to accumulate huge debts owed to suppliers.

Mr Indimuli said the money sent by the government a week ago was very little and is not enough to run schools.

This term, the ministry released a total of Sh14.4 billion to primary and secondary schools to help them prepare for the phased reopening.

No child should be sent home over fees, says CS Magoha

Secondary schools received Sh13.2 billion while primary schools received Sh1.2 billion.

Mr Indimuli said schools ought to have received 30 per cent of this year’s capitation but the funds released were not part of the capitation but meant to prepare schools for reopening.

 The Ministry of Education released Sh32.5 billion to schools as capitation for term one in January.

A principal in Kwale County, who cannot be quoted said the government is yet to release money in the tuition account meant to support academic activities.

“How do we administer quizzes, practicals among other activities?” he posed.

The principal said, non-payment of fees by students reporting back to school occasioned by government directive is proving a hard nut to crack.

He revealed that suppliers are unwilling to release items on credit due to the uncertainty of payments.

fnyamai@ke.nationmedia.com

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