The Kenya National Examination Council has established that Tana River County was performing poorly in National examinations due to cases of over age, absenteeism, class repetition, drop outs, indiscipline cases, shortage of teachers and teenage pregnancy.
Speaking during the Tana River County Education Dialogue forum at Hola Boys Secondary school on Friday, KNEC representative, Ms. Rachael Ngumbao said the Council’s findings came out of a research known as the National Assessment System for Monitoring Learning Achievements.
Speaking at the same function, the Tana River County Director of Education (CDE), Lawrence Karuntimi said lack of electricity in most schools, especially the secondary schools has also contributed to poor performance.
“We have been out for the last two weeks in the schools. For example, in Tula primary, I observed that the teaching methods are lecture-like and also found out that there were no textbooks in classes, not because there were no textbooks in the school, but because teachers did not get time to number the books from January to July,” said the CDE.
“Another reason why education in Tana River is losing quality is because of poor assessment. I worked in Tarasaa High school for 17 years but I did not see any quality assessing officer in the school throughout my stay there,” said John Mgawa, Secretary KUPPET.
As a mitigation factor, Uleta Mohammed, a representative of the office of MP Garsen, urged the parents and teachers to ensure good foundation for their children as far as education is concerned.
“The whole problem starts from the PP1 and PP2 (cage 1 and cage 2) where most children do not get the numeracy and literacy skills well and the teacher allows them to move to next classes, only to realize that the child is in class seven or eight but does not know how to read and write,” said Uleta.
Speaking at the same meeting, the Coast Regional Director of Education, Hassan Duale urged teachers not to be rigid on the students when they show signs of resisting exams or any other school obligations they ought to take.
“Let our principals try to listen to the students and call us if things run out of their hand, rather than being rigid on them and forcing them to cause damage,” said Duale.
By Dado Maryam /Simon Guruba