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Education ministry announces major changes to CBC curriculum

Grade 4 learners at St. Peter's Elite School in Gilgil during the Competency-Based Curriculum assessment on January 31, 2022, in Gilgil, Nakuru County. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]

 The Ministry of Education has announced major changes to the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC) that will take effect in January 2024.

 The changes are based on the recommendations of the Presidential Working Party on Education Reform (PWPER) report that was launched on August 10, 2023.

The report suggested that the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) should rationalise the number of learning areas and curriculum designs in terms of scope and integration of subjects within learning areas, gaps, content overload, and overlaps in basic education.

According to the report, the learning areas should not exceed five for pre-primary, seven for lower primary, eight for upper primary, nine for junior school, and seven for senior school.

The ministry has adopted these recommendations and reduced the number of learning areas and lessons for primary and junior schools as follows:

In lower primary (Grade 1 to 3), the learning areas have been reduced from the current nine to seven.

The number of lessons has been reduced from 35 to 31 per week, including the Programme of Instruction.

Hygiene and nutrition activities have been integrated within environmental activities, while creative arts have been merged with art, craft, music, and physical education.

In Upper Primary, the learning areas have been reduced from 10 to eight. The number of lessons has been reduced from 40 to 35 per week.

Foreign and Indigenous languages have been turned into co-curricular activities under the new arrangement.

In Junior School, the students will take nine learning areas from the previous 14.

The number of lessons has been reduced from 45 to 40 per week. Foreign and Indigenous languages will also be co-curricular activities at this level.

The ministry said that the changes are aimed at enhancing the quality of education and ensuring that learners acquire the relevant competencies and skills.

The ministry said revised curriculum designs for the rationalized learning areas will be available on the KICD website from January 2024 and will be distributed to schools in the course of the first term.

Guidelines for senior school will be released during the First Term.

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