School heads report anomalies in supply of core textbooks

Schools have reported disparities in the supply of textbooks for the Sh7.5 billion Government-funded programe.

According to head teachers, some schools received more books than required while others got less.

In the North Rift region, some institutions say the number of textbooks received exceeded the number of students by more than 100.

St Joseph’s Kitale High School principal Wilson Yego said he received excess textbooks for Form One students.

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In Mt Kenya region, a number of principals are wondering what to do with extra copies of textbooks lying in the school stores.

Some principals have opted to return the extra books to their respective sub-county education offices.

At Koimbi Boys’ High School, 199 textbooks for each core subject were delivered for 133 Form One students.

In another case of miscalculation, Kianderi Girls Secondary School was supplied with 252 textbooks for each core subject yet it has only 150 Form One students.

At Gititu Secondary School, principal Francis Mutemwa said he returned a truckful of textbooks to the Gatanga sub-county education office to free up space in the school stores.

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And in the remote areas of Laikipia County, school heads complained that suppliers dumped their textbooks at schools in urban areas in disregard of the agreement that they should be delivered to every school.

Surcharge suppliers

Laikipia County’s Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) Executive Secretary, Charles Wangenye, said the suppliers should be surcharged for failing to deliver the textbooks to every school as earlier agreed.

At Singore Girls in Elgeyo Marakwet County, school principal Rose Koech-Kimutai said they had received enough books.

St Patrick’s High School Iten principal Peter Obwogo also said they received sufficient textbooks.

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But a principal in Nandi who did not wish to be named said they received textbooks with an excess of 15 to 20 copies per subject.

Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) CEO Julius Jwan said they were receiving feedback from stakeholders concerning distribution of textbooks to secondary schools.

Dr Jwan said county directors of education should ensure that the extra books were distributed to institutions that had reported shortages.

“It was our first time to supply textbooks to secondary schools and the mistakes made will not be repeated,” said the CEO.

Booksellers Association of Kenya National Vice Chairman Patrick Matindi said it was worrying that so many schools received extra books.

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“It beats logic why a school with only 100 students received a delivery of 180 textbooks. This is a total waste of money,” said Mr Matindi.

Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development CEO Julius Jwan distributes textbooks at M.M Shah Primary School on January 19, 2018. [File, Standard]
Nakuru town

At St Mary’s Girls Primary School in Nakuru town, there was an under-supply of books for pupils in Standard Three, Seven and Eight.

Form One students at Elburgon Secondary School received 176 textbooks for mathematics, English, Kiswahili, physics, chemistry and biology, with Form Two students receiving 150 books.

Most schools in Kakamega County said they received less textbooks than required.

A headteacher of a primary school in Lurambi sub-county said his school received only half the number of books ordered.

“In Standard Seven, we have 121 pupils and we were given 80 books only for all the five subjects,” he said.

A head teacher from Malava sub-county said they placed an order for 183 books for Standard Eight pupils for all the subjects and received only 60 when they were closing for the August holidays.

But many secondary schools in the county received the required number of books.

Andrew Wanjala, the acting principal of Chebuyusi High School in Navakholo constituency, said they received sufficient textbooks for forms Two, Three and Four.

Cosmas Nabungolo, the St Mary’s Boys High School – Mumias principal, said they received the textbooks ordered when the school was closing in August.

A primary school head teacher in Nambale, Busia County, said he had 180 candidates and requested the same number of books at the beginning of second term but only 155 books were delivered.

[Reports by Boniface Gikandi, Silah Koskei, Fred Kibor, Mercy Kahenda, Nathan Ochunge, Ignatius Odanga]

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