By Linah Benyawa
MOMBASA, KENYA: President Uhuru Kenyatta has said that half of pupils graduating from primary school are ill-educated due to failure of quality assurance systems in these institutions.
Kenyatta warned that he would not permit situation where teachers were failing to provide quality education to students who leave school with high level of illiteracy.
“Statistics show that 50 per cent of teachers have any actual contact with their pupils or that most children remain both illiterate and innumerate at the end of Primary school, it spell a problem for the country and means somebody is not doing their work,” said Kenyatta.
He was addressing the 9th annual conference of the Kenya Primary School Heads Association (Kepsha) in Mombasa on Tuesday.
The President blamed the poor performance on the quality assurance department in the Education ministry and directed Education Cabinet Secretary Jacob Kaimenyi to give him a report on what those people in charge of quality assurance were doing to ensure quality is instilled to pupils.
“In the interest of accountability, an explanation for the rise in these disturbing statistics is overdue,” he added.
Kenyatta said the government is aimed at raising a generation who were well equipped at the earliest possible point in their lives with globally competitive competences. He added that the education sector should ensure that it safeguards equality by ensuring that vulnerable children like girls, children from pastoral communities and disabled pupils have access to child friendly schools.
“We cannot permit cultural practices that undermine equal access to persist. As a matter of fact, FGM, early marriage and failure to educate girls constitute a serious criminal infringement and child abuse and they have to stop,” he warned.
He also urged the school heads to ensure that the school environment was corruption, tribalism free arguing that they have been a damage to country’s national fabric.
“We need a system that inculcates national cohesion that honors competitiveness without demoting consideration for others. The ethos of selflessness and service must find its way back into the classroom, and into the minds and hearts of our children,” he said.