Give capitation to learners in private schools, state told

Charles Ochome

Kenya Private Schools Association Chairman Charles Owoko Ochome at The Grand Royal Swiss in Kisumu County on January 13, 2022.

Photo credit: Tonny Omondi | Nation Media Group

Private schools owners have appealed to the government to consider extending capitation to private institutions for effective implementation of Competence-Based Curriculum (CBC).

Through the Kenya Private Schools Association (KPSA), they noted that provision of soft loans and grants would enable them to invest in critical infrastructure ahead of next year’s rollout of junior secondary school.

The association’s chairman Charles Ochome expressed concern that most schools were struggling to meet new requirements for the establishment of the junior wing of secondary school as contained in the 2-6-3-3-3 system.

“The government should provide learning materials and capitation funds to all children without discriminating against those in private schools.

 “All children are Kenyan children irrespective of institutions that they choose to enrol. There is neither a public nor private child,” he said in Kisumu on Friday.

Sh8 billion

Mr Ochome said that it was unfortunate that private schools were not considered in the Sh8 billion unveiled for the establishment of classrooms in public schools in aid of transition to junior secondary schools.

 “We plead with the government to consider extending financial support to private schools in the form of concessional loans repayable at affordable interest rates for the establishment of facilities for junior secondary schools.

He pointed out that the fund will go a long way to reduce pressure on public secondary schools which are already overstretched.

Mudasa Academy Director George Mulanya underlined the need for a shift in policies that factor the Kenyan children.

“Public policies should be formulated with Kenyan children in mind. The policies should be realistic and alive to our current resources and availability of social amenities,” he said during the homecoming of new office bearers at Roya Swiss Hotel in Kisumu.

Noting that more than 60 per cent of learners are enrolled in private institutions, he pointed out that it was unfair to sideline the majority of school going children.

New curriculum

Their sentiments come as Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha reiterated the government’s preparedness to implement the new curriculum.

Speaking after commissioning the first completed classroom at Simero Secondary in Ugunja Sub County, the CS expressed confidence that most public institutions will complete the construction of 5,400 classrooms by the end of March.

“We are doing very well so far. I am hopeful that we are going to achieve between 80 to 90 per cent of all the classrooms across the country in the next one month,” he said.

The CS noted that the infrastructure expansion programme is key to the success of the new syllabus as the government is making efforts to accommodate students who will be joining junior secondary school next year.  

“I have been to different parts of the country and I am satisfied with the ongoing works,” he said.

Prof Magoha further noted that the second phase towards construction of 10,000 classrooms will begin towards the end of April after the marking of national exams.

He also revealed that the process of purchasing books for grades six and seven is ongoing.

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