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Is Kenya ready for the roll-out of a new education curriculum?

By The Standard | Published Wed, April 19th 2017 at 00:00, Updated April 18th 2017 at 19:39 GMT +3
Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Education,Science and Technology, Dr. Fred Matiang'i PHOTO:COURTESY

This is a hurried process without adequate preparations and consultations with key players. Save for a few officers at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) and the Ministry of Education, the rest including 300,000 teachers don’t know what is happening.

It is wrong to pilot a huge and expensive programme like this in the middle of the year. The roll-out is being influenced by five foreigners, who are funding it and who have hidden behind the theory of capacity building. The foreigners are also influencing content.

We asked the minister to take us through the cost-benefit analysis but he hasn’t. We are told this will cost Sh40 billion annually. Does the country have this money? The competency-based curriculum has failed in Malaysia and South Africa, rich countries than Kenya.

This is the most wonderful project if done correctly and every teacher is brought on board because the teaching strategies will change. The implementation will be fundamentally wrong if it is influenced by politics. It will go the same way 8-4-4 went. Despite being a wonderful project, it was influenced by politics. It failed.

The new curriculum needs to be piloted in January next year for a whole year and then be reviewed. Once teething problems have been identified and rectified, the earliest national roll-out should be in January 2019. We need a needs assessment, a proper communication strategy, policy regulation (matter not brought before Parliament), curriculum framework and syllabus designed and content developed. These have not been done.

Mr Sossion is the Secretary General, Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT).

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