Parents don’t know how to assess report cards: study

Basic Education director-general Robert Masese officiates the release of the Global Education Monitoring Report 2017/2018, at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) on February 28, 2018. PHOTO | ANTHONY OMUYA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

What you need to know:

  • Findings released last month by the Knec revealed that most parents were not involved in their children’s studies.
  • The report by Unesco also points out that school leaders have wide-ranging responsibilities.

Majority of parents do not know how to use school report cards to improve their children’s performance in schools, a UN agency report says.

The Global Education Monitoring Report 2017/2018, which was released on Wednesday by Unesco at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD), indicates that 72 per cent of parents surveyed said they do not know how to use information about their children’s literacy and numeracy.

Study findings were released during the event that was presided over by Basic Education director-general Robert Masese on behalf of Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed.

HOMEWORK
The report dubbed Accountability in Education notes that knowing how to use the information is as important as making it available and accessible.

Findings released last month by the Kenya National Examination Council (Knec) revealed that most parents were not involved in their children’s studies.

According to the report, only one in 10 fathers helped with their children’s homework.

Mothers consistently performed better, with two in 10 helping their children.

In the rest of the cases, the children either did the homework on their own or were assisted by their siblings.

Ms Mohamed in her remarks asked parents to take a leading role in the education of their children.

MOTIVATION
The report by Unesco also points out that school leaders have wide-ranging responsibilities.

“However, they are usually not well-prepared to deal with these challenges. Where preparation is offered it is usually in the form of brief professional training sessions,” the report adds.

The study also notes that school principals viewed management, organisation and record-keeping as their key jobs and did not mention the importance of their role in teaching and learning processes.

“Accountability pressure affects principals, but they often lack the capacity or motivation to use the opportunity to improve their school,” the findings add.

RESPONSIBILITY
Ms Mohamed said the Ministry of Education in collaboration with other government agencies had put in strategies to promote accountability in education.

These she said include development and regular review of sector policies and plans that outline the policy direction and strategies towards promoting quality education in Kenya, establishment of performance management systems for ministry officials and teachers to improve service delivery and development of a collaboration and partnerships framework.

“While these efforts have born fruits, there is need for all of us to remain vigilant and engaged to sustain and improve the gains made,” the CS said.

Unesco former director-general Irina Bokova said education is a shared responsibility between governments, schools, teachers, parents and private actors.

“It must be designed with care and with the principles of equity, inclusion and quality in mind,” added the ex-director-general.

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