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Unpaid fees causing financial constraints in public schools

Basic Education Principal Secretary (PS), Dr. Belio Kipsang, has attributed the current financial constraints faced by public schools to huge unpaid fees by parents.

Dr. Kipsang, who raised concerns over the fee arrears, urged parents to take their responsibility seriously despite experiencing economic challenges and make prompt payments.

The Education PS expressed the need for parents to support school Boards of Management (BOM) through the payment of authorized fees so as to facilitate the management of all activities and programmes of the schools.

“If you have a fee balance, the school might not be able to manage itself, kindly support your respective schools so that they are managed better,” he appealed.

The PS commended the majority of parents, whom he said are investing in the future of their children, noting that they will reap the rewards of their success.

He encouraged students to maximize any opportunity they get in school since the current digital era requires individuals who are able to solve emerging problems in society.

Dr. Kipsang, who made the remarks in a speech read on his behalf by the Rift Valley Regional Education official, Lawrence Kaburu, during the Annual General Meeting cum Prize Giving Day for Kabarnet High School in Baringo County, challenged schools to embrace ICT as a useful tool for curriculum delivery, as Kenya’s Vision 2030 states.

Mr Kaburu, who is in charge of Quality Assurance and Standards, reiterated the sentiments made by the Education PS, whereby he challenged schools countrywide to make good use of their digital platforms, to rebrand their institutions.

Kaburu stated that the internet is an equally important tool for learners and society; hence, schools must adopt it so that their online presence can be felt not only in the country but beyond.

In his remarks, County Director of Education, Japhet Masibu called upon parents not to delay paying school fees for their children now that some institutions are flexible and allow installment payments where the need arises.

Masibu was referring to the case of Kabarnet High School, where he said parents owe the institution close to Sh 26 million in arrears, noting that if the trend is allowed to continue, it can affect service delivery in the extra-county school, which has a population of more than 1,800 students.

“I am urging the parents to support the school so that no child is sent home and misses classes due to school fees,” the county director said.

The Institution’s Chief Principal, Julius Ndirangu, attributed the situation to difficult economic conditions, which he noted have affected parents ability to pay school fees, hence straining various functions of the school.

However, he said that the fee challenge has not deterred the institution, whose 273 students out of 318 qualified to join various universities this year.

The institution managed to achieve a mean score of 7.9 in last year’s Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE), up from 7.6 the previous year.

Ndirangu, who stated that the current 411 candidates have set a target of a mean grade of 9.5 this year, said he is optimistic that success will be realized through collaborative efforts from all the stakeholders.

By Benson Kelio and Joshua Kibet

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