Education is too critical to be left to vested interests
SEE ALSO :Teachers in West Pokot oppose house levyFocus critical Our primary school Physical Education (PE) teacher taught us something significant about the triple jump – also known as the hop, step and jump. In this field event, the competitor runs down the track and performs a hop, a bound, and then a long jump into the sand pit. This calls for the mustering of one’s faculties and a careful coordination of movements to attain a good distance. Hence, the teacher advised that we must avoid distractions and instead focus the mind on the feat ahead. Most importantly, he warned us never to hesitate at the jump stage. If you do, the momentum gets lost and the trajectory is compromised. Likewise, in change management, detractors and distractions are often many. Focus is critical if the leader is to succeed in accomplishing the desired outcomes. Reversing implementation of a project at the last minute can be disastrous. It is like hesitating at the jump stage of the triple jump. The momentum is lost and it becomes more difficult to restart, let alone make good progress. Sadly, in moving from the 8-4-4 system, we have severally hopped, stepped, but never managed to jump. Not good at all. The same must be avoided in the matter of delocalisation of schools. One hopes that due diligence was done before being brought to the public domain. If that be the case, then the various arms of the Ministry must hop, step, and take a long frog jump. Unfortunately, indications are that not everything or everyone may have been brought on board. None other than President Uhuru Kenyatta has previously declared that the teachers’ delocalisation policy needed review to ensure it does not break up families. He therefore directed the Education CS to look into the matter prior to implementation. Likewise, the implementation of another education policy recently hit headwinds. The CS had lowered the entry grade into teacher training colleges to D+ for students from arid and semi-arid areas, even backdating it to 2006. In justification, the Basic Education Director General, Alyas Abdi – speaking on behalf of the CS – reasoned that “the only way to solve the issue of teacher shortages in these areas is by training locals.” An interesting argument considering that non-locals have been driven out from some parts of this region, due to insecurity. In any case, this appears to contradict the very principle of delocalisation that the ministry is fervently pursuing. Why can efforts not be made to similarly delocalise the region?
SEE ALSO :Knut warned against disrupting trainingTo enjoy the New Year, stakeholders in the sector need a meeting of minds on what to do with the education of our children. It is too critical a sector to be left to vested interests. - The writer is the Presiding Bishop of Christ is the Answer Ministries. [email protected]