Faith Based Organisations (FBOs) in West Pokot County have urged parents to diligently execute their roles as caretakers and mentors to their children for a better society.
They have regretted that most parents have absconded their parental duties in anticipation that schools will shoulder uttermost responsibility in mentoring their children.
The FBOs advised the Pokot community to abandon the notion that children were fully dependent on schools to learn how they should behave themselves, noting the proper parenting calls for concerted efforts from both the parents and teachers.
They lamented that parents were not playing their part in shaping the character of their children during school holidays, hence making the work of the teachers cumbersome, when their children return to school after recess.
West Pokot National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK) Chair Reverend Moses Long’iro of the Anglican Church of Kenya (ACK) said the Competence Based Curriculum (CBC) programme should be suspended temporarily to allow for several adjustments to take place.
“Formal education in Kenya was founded by religious organizations and that is why we have come to give our views, since we still remain one of the major education stakeholders across the country,” he said.
Presenting views to the taskforce team led by Eldoret University don Prof David Some Wednesday, Rev Long’iro suggested that religious education studies should be made compulsory across the board for the sake of improving the moral standards of the nation, which currently stands compromised.
The clergy observed that low quality media content being made accessible to children through various social media platforms was partly to blame, hence derailing the essence of education.
They called on the political class across the country to measure their statements whenever they go public, lamenting that children are adopting weird behavior based on what they see and hear their leaders proclaim in public forums.
“Religious education should be made a compulsory subject at all levels of education. This will help in addressing cases of immorality and violent extremism among our youth in the country,” explained Rev Long’iro.
Catholic Diocese of Kitale Education Secretary Delphine Wachiye suggested that strict measures should be instituted against those who make school girls pregnant explaining that such leaners undergo untold stigma.
“Schools should be allowed to perform pregnancy tests on learners by the help of the Ministry of Health personnel and in consultation with the parents before schools close. Pregnant learners should go on leave as soon as they are discovered to avoid stigma arising from morning sickness and ridicule from other learners,” stated Wachiye.
The Diocesan Education Secretary called on the relevant education stakeholders to look into the issue of drugs and substance abuse, as well as cultism in learning institutions.
Wachiye opposed the mixing of grades 7 and 8 pupils with high school students, noting that the arrangement will escalate cases of homosexuality, stealing, defilements and absenteeism in schools.
She added that for effective implementation of CBC in West Pokot County, the government should enhance school feeding programme in all day schools for it will increase retention and concentration among the learners and also help curb child labour practices.
By Richard Muhambe