School heads warned not to increase fees next year

Education CS Ezekiel Machogu appears before the Education committee at the Continental house, Nairobi. [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu has fired warning shots against school heads who plan on increasing junior and secondary schools' fees in the next academic year.

Speaking on Wednesday, November 8 in Mombasa during the Kenya Primary School Heads Association (KEPSHA) annual conference, Machogu assured that the government will maintain its commitment to providing free education.

He dismissed reports that alluded that school fees will be increased next year.

"I wish to clarify from recent reports that there is no intention on the part of the government to increase school fees in Secondary or junior secondary," he said.

The CS further assured that the government will continue supporting schools and learners with their requisite capitation.

He said that since Free Primary Education was introduced in the country in 2003, some school heads were imposing excess fees on parents making the services unaffordable.

Since 2003, the government has been providing free primary education funding to each learner in primary (Sh1,420) junior school learners (Sh15,042), and in secondary schools- Sh22,240 per learner, he noted.

Machogu asserted that the funding is now a State obligation to fulfilling free and basic education.

The CS warned that action will be taken against school heads who will be found increasing fees against the directives.

"This is a Constitutional matter; anybody going against that particular provision...it will not only amount to gross misconduct but a violation of the Constitution itself. School administrators will therefore be required to ensure adherence to the preferred circulars and directives on the matter," added Machogu.

Fees for boarding schools will remain at the currently approved rate.

Machogu presided over the opening ceremony of the conference as school heads celebrated 20 years of the association's existence.

Through KEPSHA, the teachers have embarked on a five-day conference that began on Monday, November 6.