Officials of the Presidential Working Party on Education Reforms have assured Kenyans that views from ongoing public participation forums will be captured in its collated final report.
The assurance was made by Prof. David Some, who is in charge of a task force that held a consultative forum with education stakeholders and members of the public in Trans Nzoia County.
The two-day public participation forum was held at the Kitale National Polytechnic. The stakeholders largely involved education officials, teachers and parents.
Prior to the indoor public hearing, the team had visited randomly selected learning institutions across the County.
Prof. Some emphasized the main objective for the countrywide forums was to enable the government under the Ministry of Education to initiate and implement necessary reforms within the sector.
“The purpose for ongoing public engagements with education stakeholders is to gather views that would assist the government to streamline our education curriculum for the benefit of the learners,” remarked Some.
Stakeholders who presented views to the committee raised some salient issues over the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC), with majority of them suggesting certain areas to be amended in order to improve the system.
According to the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) Trans Nzoia Branch Chairperson, Mr David Wanjala, CBC should not be done away with but strengthened.
“This is a timely education system that fits with 21st Century. If fully supported resources-wise and prudently managed, this is the curriculum that will end up producing employable graduates in all the diverse fields of development, formal and informal,” remarked Wanjala.
Wanjala emphasized on the need to offer refresher courses based on CBC expectations for all the teachers as well as employing more of them to address what he described as the thorny challenge of shortage of teachers in primary and secondary schools across the country.
The Knut official further pointed out the need to review the curriculum’s content, saying the subject content demands were too overwhelming for the learners, especially the younger ones.
His views were echoed by Kenya Secondary Schools Head Association (KSSHA) Trans Nzoia Chapter Chairperson John Murumba.
Murumba appealed to the government to increase capitation from the current Sh1, 200 to 2,000 per student in order to address the problem of underfunding caused by the existing economic realities.
Area County Commissioner Mathias Rioba was the host, accompanied by top education officers led by County Director of Education Luke Chebet and his TSC counterpart Jamalun Ahmed.
Other members of the Presidential Working Party on Education Reforms task force included Mr Paul Mungai (State Department of Vocational Colleges), Jane Mose (National Treasury), Dr. Reuben Nthamburi (TSC Headquarters) and Salome Eyangan (Special Needs Education).
The task force was in charge of collecting views from the public in Trans Nzoia, Elgeyo Marakwet, Turkana and West Pokot Counties.
By Maurice Aluda