Resolve CBC Confusion on Junior Secondary School Hosting; Education Stakeholders Ask Machogu
The Education Cabinet Secretary, Ezekiel Machogu, has been urged to clarify which school grade six will attend in January 2023.
According to the present education system, the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC), grade 6 learners will enter junior secondary schools the following year.
Several counties’ education stakeholders were divided on whether or not the government should maintain junior secondary classes in primary schools.
During public participation forums in Nyeri, Kirinyaga, Kakamega, Bomet, Kisii, and Kilifi, the task group appointed by President William Ruto to examine the country’s education system heard various opinions from stakeholders.
Concerns were made over the expense of the competency-based curriculum, the absence of suitable teacher training, the substandard classrooms, and the lack of parental involvement.
The Kenya Secondary School Heads Association (Kessha) and Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) Nyeri branches supported the CBC system and its plan for integrating middle schools into secondary schools.
Cyrus Wachira, who is in charge of Kessha, and Francis Wanjohi (Kuppet) said that the CBC model was the most meaningful curriculum but needed to be changed.
During their presentations to the working group on education reforms at Nyeri High School, the two leaders argued that the junior school should be restored to primary school because the schools cannot house the students, such as dormitories.
Ndiritu Gichuki advocated moving junior students to primary school on behalf of the Nyeri County Board, arguing that secondary schools were unprepared to host the students and that the learners would be bullied.
“To avoid wasting classrooms whose occupants will be referred to as students in secondary schools,” Gichuki advised, “students should continue with their studies at the primary school as they come of age.”
However, Wachira stated that primary schools lacked certain facilities that high school pupils require.
“What is needed in the current CBC is a clarification of parents’ roles to avoid a situation where a parent is left to take on the roles of teachers,” Wachira said.
According to Kuppet’s Wanjohi, the government should restore the school equipment production unit to close the gap caused by parents’ increased spending on homework materials.
On the grounds of Tenwek High School in Bomet county, a discussion on junior secondary education also took center stage.
Requests to shift junior secondary pupils to elementary schools dominated conversations, with Kessha officials stating that, due to the age of the children, the team needed to make adjustments to ensure that they remained in primary schools.
The Association’s Secretary, Beatrice Koech, informed the committee chaired by Prof. Raphael Munavu that primary schools are more equipped to handle young learners than high schools.
Koech stated that the facilities of secondary schools would not be adequate to handle seventh-grade students in junior secondary.
“As secondary schools, we have limited facilities and teachers to handle junior learners, and it is our desire that the junior secondary is housed in primary school.”
Malel Langat, an executive at Knut, stated that despite the government’s intention to construct classrooms at secondary schools, the proposal to maintain junior secondary should be hastened before the January transfer.
Langat cautioned that ignoring calls during the January transition could cause turmoil and confusion. He stated that the nation risks generating undeveloped students. He also criticized the CBC’s brief introduction of teachers. Langat said, “Our goal is that the government will empower teachers through training.”
Governor of Bomet Hilary Barchok argued for eliminating CBC, arguing that the country is not prepared for curriculum reform.
Uasin Gishu Governor Jonathan Bii Chelilim, parents, are still determining whether their children will continue in their current primary schools or will be obliged to enroll in a secondary school.
The county administrator is requesting the incoming Education CS to clarify the situation.
“We want the Education CS to tell us what we will do with our children who are supposed to join junior secondary school. Where will they learn and how has the government planned for the transition,” Chelilim said.
He notes that the new system has caused parental misunderstanding, which must be rectified as soon as possible.
The sixth-grade students are anticipated to take the national examination to determine their placement in junior secondary school.
The government has spent the last few months erecting CBC classrooms that will be utilized to house junior secondary schools.
Some classrooms are in elementary schools, while others are in secondary institutions.
Several private schools have also been chosen to house junior high schools.
The newly constituted Education reforms task team is intended to address the CBC transition as part of its responsibilities.
During his inaugural address on September 13, 2022, President William Ruto assured parents that the transition issue would be resolved before January 2023.
A 42-member delegation led by Professor Raphael Munavu has been touring the nation to collect public opinions on the current education system.
The team will be in Eldoret town on November 11, 2022, and governor Chelilim encourages residents to voice their opinions in huge numbers.
“Let us all come and give our views about the education system because previously we were not given that opportunity,” he said.
The government implemented CBC in 2018, with the first cohort anticipated to enter junior high schools in January 2023.
However, the system has been criticized by various groups, including parents, who feel it is excessively pricey.