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Coronavirus Pandemic Affected Hola Primary School for the Deaf

Hola Primary School for the Deaf has recorded an improvement of 13 points in this year’s Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) results.

The top student 17 years old Abdalla Badhula had 170 marks. The special school had six candidates, four boys and two girls. Nationally, a total of 2,675 candidates with special needs sat for KCPE.

The school’s Senior Teacher Kamaku Gideon is certain all the six students will be getting form one slot in line with the government policy of 100 per cent transition to secondary school.

He said the nine-month closure of schools due to the outbreak of Covid-19 last year affected their KCPE preparations.

“We didn’t have online classes. Learning virtually posed a challenge since our students are not computer literate and lacked gadgets,” said Kamaku.

The school uses normal syllabus like the rest of the primary schools but use Kenya Sign Language in their teaching.

The Head Teacher, Deaf David Mutiga died from the novel coronavirus as students were sitting for their National Examinations in 23rd March 2021.

Hola School for the Deaf Primary School senior Teacher Kamaku Gideon at the school maize farm. Photo by Sadik Hassan

“The death of the Head Teacher traumatized our students. He was a father figure and close to them,” added Kamaku.

The School has a three-and-a-half acres farm where they have plant maize and watermelons. The produces assist in the running of the school. It has a total of 80 students who, besides classwork, they are also trained in farming, chicken rearing and goat keeping.

Kamaku said he was motivated by his younger brother who was born with a hearing disability to train as a special School Teacher, advised parents to take their children with hearing disability to school.

The school is still liaising with chiefs to track down 10 students who failed to report back to the school after the 9-month closure of schools last year.

By Sadik Hassan

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