Principals expect more Form Ones to fill new classrooms

KISE director Norman Kiogora (left), TSC CEO Nancy Macharia and KESSHA chairman Indimuli Kahi during a past event. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

School principals are urging the government to ensure the teachers in the ongoing recruitment are distributed evenly in schools.

The school heads claim the majority of schools will experience an upsurge in Form One intake due to extra classrooms that were set aside for the junior secondary wing.

Kahi Indimuli, the chair of the Kenya Secondary Schools Heads Association, said that schools were restricted with the infrastructure during admission, but with some more classrooms at their disposal, public secondary schools expect to experience more requests for admission.

‘‘Schools will experience strain on teachers to manage the high enrolment come next year mostly in Form One. The government needs to work on how this will be managed,’’ Indimuli said.

President William Ruto said learners moving to grades 7, 8 and 9 will remain in their current primary schools as opposed to an earlier proposal to have them join high schools, pushing education stakeholders back to the drawing board after a year of building classrooms in secondary schools.

Indimuli said that with the government’s change of tune on JSS  being in primary schools which was informed by the Presidential Working Party recommendations, the extra classes in secondary schools will almost certainly attract more applicants.

‘‘Many schools had prepared to welcome the Grade 7 in January but since they will remain in primary schools, the classrooms will be for Form One learners,’’ he added.

Mwihila High School principal Maurice Ajulo said with the government’s change of tune, more teachers are needed in schools to accommodate the expected high Form One intake.

He said the school, which has only 27 Teachers Service Commission (TSC) teachers as opposed to the required 45, is struggling to serve the high number of students.

“With extra space, we expect high enrollment. This means we need some more teachers to meet the demands of the learners,’’ he said.

He said the institution will use the extra infrastructure to accommodate more First Formers next year.