Parents decry high cost of CBC

Parents support the new education curriculum that seeks to exploit the child’s holistic capabilities as opposed to academics.

Parents who spoke to The Standard — while appreciating the new Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) — said that the cost implication will be too high if its to be implemented fully.

They called on the Government, through the Education ministry, to fully fund learning materials under the CBC.

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Kenya National Association of Parents (Knap) Chairman Nicholas Maiyo said that although they support the new curriculum, the ministry should rein in and simplify the new education system.

Mr Maiyo said the cost of implementing the system will not be within the reach of many parents in rural and informal settlements in urban areas.

“The Government should ensure that civic education is done. Some parents understand what is needed but majority may be lost in the confusion,” he said.

According to Maiyo, more than 80 per cent of the parents are in support of the new curriculum except for a few challenges that should be addressed so that they read from the same script.

John Kimutai (not his real name) who has a Grade I pupil at Consolata Catholic School in Nairobi, told The Standard that the new curriculum is more practical-oriented and focuses on the holistic growth of the child.

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“The curriculum is pupil-centred and it makes the child think. There is no spoon-feeding which makes the child active in all areas,” said the parent.

Kimutai avers that while the child thinks critically in the new curriculum, the cost of ensuring the pupil has what is required is slightly high.

He argues that the decision to have pupils write answers inside the CBC textbooks will push the cost of education up, making it unaffordable to poor families.

A parent at Fr Joseph Richetti Primary School, Kiambu County, explained that the new curriculum is more parent-involving, which requires the availability of at least one parent at any given time when the pupil is doing homework.

According to Josephine Wanjiru (not her real name), the involvement of parents in CBC will greatly impact on the learning, especially where both parents leave early for work and return late.

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“The curriculum is good because it has practical aspects. The challenge is one parent must be available to help in the homework. How I wish parents are able to take their children through the learning process,” said Wanjiru.

She further explained that there are certain resources needed for practical, posing a serious challenge to parents who cannot afford.

Another parent from Homa Bay County said that there are some homework that a child cannot do without the help of a parent.

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