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HomeEDUCATIONEducation Task Force team returns to drawing board For Final CBC Review

Education Task Force team returns to drawing board For Final CBC Review

Education Task Force team returns to drawing board For Final CBC Review

President William Ruto received the second interim report of the Presidential Working Group on Education Reforms (PWPER) on Thursday, but he was unimpressed with their work and requested that they provide better proposals.

According to sources present at the meeting, the President was unconvinced that their suggestions, particularly regarding university finance, are sustainable and so requested that they rethink them before to submitting their final proposals.

As a result, PWPER chairman Raphael Munavu has convened a crisis meeting to discuss how to address the President’s concerns.

The consensus among PWPER members who spoke with the media is that they improperly interpreted their terms of reference. The President described their report as “average,” indicating that it fell short of his expectations.

Unlike when PWPER gave its initial report on December 3, 2022, State House did not issue a communique regarding the meeting that lasted most of the afternoon and finished late at night.

The panel suggested that the government rescue the cash-strapped public universities, which had accrued debts of nearly Sh56 billion. However, President Ruto questioned the reasoning behind this and if it is sustainable over the long term.

The majority of the money owed by universities is owed by the Treasury in capitation.

“He instructed us to consider the offers. It was very enlightening. Sometimes you believe you are doing the correct action until it is questioned. “It was a productive meeting in which various scenarios were considered,” a source added.

Furthermore contested was whether or not the working group’s proposed models had been tested. A source indicated that the President’s economic advisers were hesitant to invest more money in public universities lacking the necessary infrastructure to prevent a recurrence of the same problems.

The lack of clear financing guidance may postpone the entrance of the more than 173,000 students who qualified for university admission based on the results of the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education issued last month.

As has been the case since 2017, the team was questioned as to whether the government could afford to finance all of them. Recently, President Ruto stated that parents who are able to should pay for their children’s college education.

Although government financing has stayed constant, the number of students has increased, resulting in a decrease in per-student funding.

At the same time, the President is believed to have questioned the current structure outlined in the Universities Act, in which the senior management of universities is appointed by the Public Service Commission (2012).

Nonetheless, the Head of State was reportedly enthusiastic about the founding of the Open National University.

A technical group is already working on it, and its launch is expected for May of this year. In September, students are likely to be admitted. According to insiders, the introduction will resemble the Hustler Fund.

Vice-chancellors of public institutions reportedly fear that the development of the open university will further deprive them of students and income.

The President also questioned the rationale behind proposals to lessen college entrance requirements for teacher preparation programs. He questioned why marks should be lowered to allow more students when there are thousands of unemployed teachers, according to the source.

A proposal to create at least one national polytechnic in each country reportedly did not sit well with the President.

Professor Munavu’s description of tomorrow’s meeting as a debriefing of the State House meeting has already divided the team. While the chair desires that just the chairs of the technical subcommittees and a few others be present, some members argue that all of them should be invited.

The duration of the third and final report of the working group expires at the end of March.

Education Task Force team returns to drawing board For Final CBC Review


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