Since 1902

Errant students deserve severe punishment


Setting schools ablaze is becoming increasingly the norm other than the unexpected. Students have senselessly turned their anger on school property.

They could have genuine grievances but this cannot justify the criminal acts. The reasons being given by students range from being denied permission to watch football to highhandedness of the administration.

I just want to pose one question to these wayward learners: when you disagree with your parents at home, do you set the house or home on fire? I am sure you don‘t.

It is therefore foolishness for you to resort to violence when your schools have laid down mechanisms to address your concerns. Civility dictates that disagreements be resolved amicably.

From little known sub-county schools to seasoned national schools, the script has been the same. I am particularly disappointed by students of Sunshine Secondary School in Nairobi.

How can they attempt to burn their school? What do they lack? Nothing. It is just mockery and dishonesty on the part of Sunshine students to put into doubt their hard earned character.

Back to the rest of students. The precision and accuracy with which they are executing their heinous acts points to well-choreographed arson script whose only objective is to paralyse learning in schools.

The facilities being targeted by these ignorant learners took many years to procure or construct. Whichever the case may be, I empathise with the parents who will bear the brunt of their children‘s folly.

However, I am quick to remind parents that one reaps what he or she plants. The bubble of many years of poor parenting has finally burst.


As the government establishes the causes of this wave of school fires, parents should go back to the drawing board and find their fault in the upbringing of these children.

The Ministry of Education directive to bar students from the affected schools from simply transferring is a step in the right direction. Students must know that one can never escape punishment for their own misdeeds. The courts must serve them justice.

Those found culpable must serve time in juvenile institutions.

Ashford Kimani