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Primary Schools Set To Lose Significant Amount Of Capitation Money As Parents Opposes Proposal To Raise Fees Under CBC

Primary Schools Set To Lose Significant Amount Of Capitation Money As Parents Opposes Proposal To Raise Fees Under CBC

Primary schools are set to lose a significant amount of capitation money, which the government intends to redirect to secondary schools for junior high.

The transfer of Standard 7 and 8 to junior high will result in a decrease in both population and revenue at primary schools.

Secondary schools will be a population and financial powerhouse at the same time, controlling upwards of Sh100 billion per year. The first batch of CBC students is expected to enter junior secondary school in 2023.

In effect, a national school with 1,000 students will control up to Sh100 million in capitation and direct fees paid by students each year.
The 1,000 figure represents the national average for the number of students in most schools.

Heads of extra county and county schools with the same population will have up to Sh80 million in their control.

Subcounty schools, also known as day schools, will have the smallest budget of about Sh22 million per year. The number of students entering secondary school is expected to double in the first year of the new curriculum.

According to a Star analysis of the CBC's impact on funding for free primary and secondary education, the new curriculum cuts both ways. Primary schools will be underfunded, while secondary schools will be heavily rewarded.

The greatest shift will occur in 2023 when secondary schools will see a double intake. Those entering secondary school will be the CBC's pioneer class – currently in Grade 5 – and the second-to-last cohort of students under 8-4-4.

KNBS data reveals that this will include 1.32 million candidates taking the second-to-last KCPE examination under the 8-4-4 system, as well as 1.24 million students from the pioneer class of CBC who will be entering junior high.

The projected population in secondary school in 2023 will be 5.56 million students.

This means that secondary schools will now have five classes instead of the current four. They will also receive an additional Sh27 billion to cover the costs of the CBC class.

On the other hand, the number of students enrolled in primary schools will fall from 10 million to around 7.5 million. This will be the lowest enrollment in a decade for primary schools.
According to education experts, if the transition is not well managed, it could paralyze operations in both primary and secondary schools.
Johnson Nzioka, chairman of the Kenya Primary School Heads Association, argued on Wednesday that with revenue in primary schools declining, the institutions may face a crisis in meeting operational costs.

He suggested that the primary school capitation be reviewed to ensure a smooth transition, noting that the amount currently provided is insufficient to cover school operations.

This is due to the fact that the government has not reviewed primary school enrollment since 2003 when the Mwai Kibaki-led government implemented Free Primary Education.

On Tuesday, Elimu Yetu national coordinator Joseph Wasikhongo questioned the government's willingness to provide extra capitation in secondary schools under the CBC.

Kenya Secondary Heads Association (KESHA) chairman Indimuli Kahi said on Tuesday that schools have been operating on shoestring budgets since the government implemented the 100% transition policy.
As a result, despite the increase in capitation provided to institutions, the schools will be put under a lot of strain as the population grows.

He stated that the increase in capitation will cater for the operation of schools, as it has been low in 8-4-4, even though the population in some schools is set to increase by as many as 500 students, which will be detrimental if the institutions are not prepared.

Kahi went on to say that schools might be forced to raise the amount of direct fees students pay in order to fund other operations.
Nicholas Maiyo, chairman of the National Parents Association, called on the government on Tuesday to ensure proper planning as the transition approaches.

However, Maiyo opposes the proposal to raise fees under the CBC to cover any additional demands that may arise.
“Already, parents are under immense pressure in primary school. The fees in secondary schools is over the roof, suggesting a further increase will be detrimental to parents. Education should be accessible to the rich and poor in equal measures,” Maiyo said.



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