Government to be more strict in registering new public and private primary schools

The government will be stricter in registering new public primary and primary schools in future, the Principal Secretary for Education and Early Learning, Dr. Belio Kipsang has said.

He said unplanned registration of schools was affecting the provision of quality Education as this led the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) to transfer teachers from schools which were poorly staffed to the new schools.

Dr. Kipsang directed the County Directors of Education to ensure there is ample justification for creation of a new school before the County Education Boards (CEB) approves its registration.

“You must provide leadership in registering new schools,” Dr. Kipsang said.

He spoke during the launch the first ever national policy dialogue on education quality and learning outcomes in Kenya in a Nairobi Hotel yesterday.

Dr. Belio also disclosed that the government was rethinking the Primary I Pre-service training for teachers.

He said government wants upgrade the P I training to diploma level to ensure that graduates from these institutions have enhanced capacity in terms of content knowledge and teaching method to effectively manage the new Competence Based Curriculum.

The Chief Executive Officer of the Teachers Service Commission, Dr. Nancy Macharia said body needed to employ over 12,000 apart from the ones it employees annually, to address the shortage of teachers in the light of the Free Primary and the free day secondary education.

She said she was forced to deploy teachers to new schools from those already in the service, noting that this exacerbated the shortage of teachers across public schools in the country.

Education Practice Manager, World Bank, Dr. Sajitha Bashir, said   Kenya was doing well in in terms access and quality education as revealed in Southern African Consortium for Monitoring education Quality (SACMEQ) on the assessments.

She, however, challenged Kenya to ensure it improved in providing quality education to match standards reflected in the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) and Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS).

PISA is a worldwide study by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in member and non-member nations of 15-year-old school pupils’ scholastic performance on mathematics, science, and reading while TIMSS is an international assessment conducted under the auspices of the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA) and assesses the mathematics and science knowledge of students in Grades 4 and 8—the equivalent of Class 4 and 8.

Dr. Bashir said World Bank studies which will be released later revealed that learners in Sub-Saharan Africa faced serious challenges in reading and numeracy skills.

She said report indicated what policy interventions governments should make to address the gaps in the development of the foundational skills of literacy and numeracy that defines quality education.

The dialogue aimed at discussing the status of the provision of basic education in the country, in particular, learners’ achievement of basic literacy and numeracy skills—which is the foundation of education in later years of education.

 The participants included Education policy makers, Curriculum development experts, Education stakeholders, development partners.