Exactly 6 months after learning institutions were closed, no safety measures have been put in place ahead of school reopening in January 2021. This is according to interviews with headteachers. Since the 1st Covid-19 case that led to the closure of schools on 15th of March 2020, there has been no sign of children returning to school this year.
The Education CS Professor George Magoha has upheld his decision of parents staying with their children until normalcy returns noting that it is not yet safe to return to school because a living child is better than a dead child.
However, only three months remaining to begin a new year, the Star interviews with several school heads analyzing the modern crisis, question the ability of schools re-opening in regards to the containment measures.
The decision on when to re-open learning institutions has become one of the most popularly contested debates around loosening the coronavirus lockdown. While most contestants have been focusing on the loss of children's education, the bigger concern is the reopening impact of pre-mature preparations.
Teachers Updates has noticed that up to now most schools are lacking a go-ahead on what they need to do since no enough set of money meant for ensuring safer reopening has been put in place. Headteachers foretell a hurry against the period approach in preparation for the resumption of learning in schools
"Schools are still stuck where they were in mid- March and headteachers are in the dark on the way forward," a secondary school head who sought anonymity told the Star. The learning institutions were asked in May to submit their status on the number if school population, toilest, classes and dormitories to the Ministry of Education.
The Education CS Magoha later in August said that the state had sent Ksh2. 1 billion for the construction of more classrooms in secondary schools and Ksh6.5 billion to improve infrastructure as well as employ more teachers.
The above-mentioned money was channelled from Sh59.4 and Sh12.4 billion meant for free primary and secondary schools education consecutively. Half of these funds had already been sent to schools in 1st term. Speaking during the parliamentary committee in August, Magoha revealed that the term 2 money was channelled to the Covid-19 Education Emergency Fund.
Kenya Secondary Schools Heads Association (KESHA) chairman Kahi Indimuli protested the lack of proper plan and guidance on in reopening of schools. Mr Indimuli noted that no money had been sent to secondary institutions for the schools to pay bills and prepare for re-opening.
Mr Indimuli noted that neither Board of Management teachers nor the non-teaching staff have been paid for the past 5 months. Most Education experts say that more school closure time would allow improving the institutions to the required standard.
Kenya Primary Schools Heads Association (KESHA) Chairman, Nicholas Gathemia also questioned uncertainty in the efforts safety reopening before measures noting that primary schools as well have not received the money.
He worried that most institutions have stalled salaries for the non-teaching staffs compromising their lives. Mr Gathemia noted that it was a total abuse of human rights and unfair to put someone to work for several months without pay.