Reforms: P1 teachers directed to acquire diplomas in education

Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) mathematics specialist Joshua Kilundo consults with Catherine Kiyiapi of the Teachers Service Commission during a session convened to make the newly published curriculum textbooks more suitable for children with special needs. [Photo by Dun Sikoyo/Standard]
Teachers with certificate papers will undergo additional training to keep up with new education system.

Certificate courses in teacher training colleges are set to be phased out as the new education curriculum requires tutors with higher skills.

And primary school teachers with certificate qualifications will undergo additional training to improve their academic qualifications to keep up with the demands of the 2-6-6-3 system that is being implemented gradually to replace the 8-4-4 education system.

The details emerged yesterday when top officials of Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) appeared before National Assembly Education Committee at Parliament Buildings.

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KICD Chief Executive Officer Jwan Julius said the institution had made a proposal to raise training level of all primary school teachers to diploma.

This means that the basic training of primary school teachers will last three years. Currently, P1 teachers acquire certificates after two-year training.

“We are proposing that during teachers training, they get enough time for content and adequate time for practicals. And this needs more training time,” said Jwan.

He told MPs that the current two-year training does not allow adequate time for teachers to undertake practicals, which is a critical component under the competency-based curriculum.

There are about 220,000 primary school teachers, some of whom are certificates holders.

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Committee chairperson Julius Melly had sought to know the status of new curriculum implementation, including teacher training and preparation of learning materials. KICD is rolling out the second phase of the 2-6-6-3 system pilot that will replace the 8-4-4 education system.

Emuhaya MP Omboko Milemba, Bungoma County Woman Representative Catherine Wambilyanga, Geoffrey Odanga of Matayos and Malulu Injendi of Malava were also present.

Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) Secretary General Wilson Sossion yesterday endorsed the proposal but demanded that the Government hires all P1 teachers who have not been employed.

Sossion also demanded that all P1 teachers currently in Teachers Service Commission (TSC) payroll be moved up through intensive capacity building.

“We have about 70,000 teachers with P1 papers, trained but not yet employed. They must be hired by TSC first before they think of phasing out certificates,” he said.

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TSC Chief Executive Officer Nancy Macharia last week told MPs that the Commission requires Sh900 million for training teachers on the implementation of the new competency-based curriculum.

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