KNUT Highlights Three 8-4-4 Flaws Contributing To High Unemployment Rate
Collins Oyuu, secretary general of the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT), identified three major flaws in the 8-4-4 system that he believes have contributed significantly to the country’s high unemployment rate.
The system, according to Oyuu, was more focused on exams than the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC), which focuses on skills.
He contended that failing the three stages of examination in a learner’s life-sentenced graduates to manual labor.
The Kenyan National Primary Education (KCPE), Kenya Certificate for Secondary Education (KCSE), and tertiary exams were highlighted as pivotal stages in a learner’s life.
“The 8-4-4 system was marred with knowledge, and exams were common. The system was examination-oriented,” Oyuu lamented.
“You have the knowledge and no skill at all. You, therefore, join the group of boda boda riders. In these places, you can easily become a thief out of frustrations,” Oyuu added.
He also lamented the plight of students who went through the 8-4-4 curriculum, emphasizing that the majority of them spent more time in exam rooms than in classrooms.
He did, however, recognize students who went through the system and landed jobs in reputable organizations.
“That is a very special learner. The learner had talent under the 8-4-4 system but developed it alone, this is where CBC comes in,” he said.
Furthermore, the Secretary-General praised the CBC, noting that it will provide learners with job-relevant skills.
Oyuu explained that the goal of CBC is to develop skills in learners so that they are not condemned when they go through all of the exam stages.
He also urged the government to consider the welfare of teachers as it reviews the CBC curriculum.
The CBC task force has already asked parents to provide feedback on the curriculum, which several stakeholders oppose.
CBC was said to be more concerned with parents than with students.
Some parents complained that the new curriculum is too expensive, despite its emphasis on honing students’ skills and thought processes.