A Junior secondary school teacher takes students through an integrated lesson at Nyamachaki Primary School in Nyeri on February 22, 2023. [Kibata Kihu, Standard] At least Sh9.6 billion has finally been released as capitation to Junior Secondary Schools (JSS). The government has also disbursed 15 million textbooks for JSS. Principal Secretary for Basic Education Belio Kipsang said the Ministry of Education released the amount to implement the Junior Secondary Schools programme across the country. Speaking at Sacred Heart Mukumu Girls High School on Wednesday, Kipsang said the government has made good progress in terms of stabilising the JSS programme. "I want to say that at the beginning of the week, we released Sh9.6 billion capitation to Junior Secondary Schools and I can tell the public that the government is making good progress in terms of settling down the JSS," said the PS. "We are at 80 per cent in terms of books distribution to JSS, on Monday we distributed 15 million books out of the 18 million books that are required for our Grade Seven learners," added Kipsang. According to Kipsang, the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has so far posted 30,000 teachers that were earlier recruited. "We are settling the issue of Junior Secondary School and we believe by the time our kids return from Easter holidays Grade Seven learners will be fully settled down. And by the time we close schools, the government will have fully settled the matter of JSS," said Kipsang. Distribution of the textbooks had earlier been delayed by Sh6 billion debt three weeks ago. Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) Director Charles Ong'ondo said that the remaining 20 per cent was due to data error. Prof Ong'ondo added that the problem was that some students from private schools that were not approved to host JSS moved to approved public schools. "In some parts of the country like Western Kenya, students were transferred to public schools and we are forced to ensure the learners get the textbooks from their current schools" explained Ong'ondo. According to him, the Sh9.6 billion capitation money will offset the Sh4.2 billion debt for textbooks. Last month, the government was yet to pay the Sh3 billion balance owed to publishers after they distributed Grade Six books last year. Another Sh3.2 billion is yet to be released to facilitate printing and distribution of 18.3 million Grade Seven textbooks. Kenya Literature Bureau, East African Education Publishers, Jomo Kenyatta Foundation, MountainTop, Storymoja, Moran, Spotlight and Longhorn are some of the publishers contracted to print and distribute books to public schools. In Kakamega, head teachers interviewed confirmed to have received the textbooks. Kakamega Primary School head Dickson Wanyangu said they have already received the last batch of JSS textbooks. "We received the last batch of Mathematics and Social Studies textbooks this week and I can confirm that almost all learners," said Wanyangu.