The intake for Junior Secondary School Grade Seven students in West Pokot County is running smoothly across the county with education stakeholders giving it a nod.
A survey conducted by an Education Multi-Agency Team led by the area County Commissioner (CC), Apollo Okello, revealed that the process of Junior Secondary School intake had attracted many learners.
Okello while addressing the press noted that a spot check on various primary and junior secondary schools in the region had already enrolled Grade Seven students for studies with minimal hitches.
He stated that he was pleased that the schools in the region were having a successful intake despite fears that parents had little understanding about the transition.
“The process is progressing on smoothly as expected. I call upon parents to cooperate with the government to ensure that the programme runs seamlessly, for the benefit of our children,” he urged.
He cited Kabichbich and Chepkono schools in Pokot South Sub-County, and Chelombai and St. Michael’s Academy in Kipkomo Sub-County as schools that had successfully admitted Grade Seven students for fo Junior Secondary education.
He said the education stakeholders are pleased with the findings that at the schools junior secondary learners were already in class for studies.
Okelo said they were impressed with the admission of more girls for junior secondary education, urging parents to also put more efforts towards the boy child education for balance in society.
“We have noted that the parents at Kabichbich Primary and Secondary School, have placed a lot of emphasis on the education of girls,” said CC Okelo.
The County Commissioner reiterated that the government will, at the end, send funds for the programme at all junior secondary schools.
“Each learner in junior secondary school will be allocated Sh.15,000 as capitation to finance the learner’s education. Our task is to ensure that by the end of the week, all learners who are supposed to be in Grade Seven have been admitted to the various schools they are supposed to join,” mentioned the CC.
Okello said the government has put measures in place to ensure learners are safe in school and at home in all parts of the county.
West Pokot County Teachers Service Commission (TSC) Director, Benard Kimachas noted that grade seven learners will be taught by qualified teachers, who have a degree in education.
He further said that the teachers in primary who have degrees in education, will be transferred to teach the grade seven students.
Kimachas added that the government has already employed teachers, but they are yet to pick-up their employment letters and be deployed to teach in various schools in the region.
West Pokot County Director of Education, Dr. Francis Shikanda, reiterated that for boarding schools, parents will make arrangements with their respective school administrations, on mechanisms to make the best for their learners.
He pointed out that the government is committed, to ensuring a smooth transition for all learners joining junior secondary education and those joining Form One.
Dr. Shikanda said they are conducting an assessment of the intake of junior secondary school students in all public and private schools as a way of ensuring 100% transition of grade six to grade seven in the existing primary schools approved.
County Police Commander (CPC) Peter Kattam noted that the government will not spare parents who fail to take their children to school.
“We will not tolerate any kind of mistreatment of any child by parents who are still engaging in Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and child marriages. We want to ensure that all children are in school as required and that the rights of our children are protected,” Kattam emphasized.
By Richard Muhambe and Anthony Melly