Students studying law and their deans have called for decentralisation of advocates training programme and reduction of subjects in order to curb mass failure at the Kenya School of Law (KSL)
Daystar University Law School Dean Moni Wekesa and president of the KSL students governing council Timothy Thondu painted a sorry state of affairs at KSL.
Appearing before the Senate Justice, Legal Affairs and Human Rights Committee with other legal scholars, Wekesa said KSL, the only advocates' training school in Kenya, is overstretched with one lecturer handling more than 200 students at a time. This is against the recommended 60 to 70 students per class as stipulated by the Commission for University Education.
“KSL admits about 2,000 students a year to the Advocates Training Programme (ATP). These are taught in classes of about 200. This is a very weird number,” said Wekesa on behalf of all deans of law schools in the country.
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The nine-member committee led by Okong’o Omogeni (Nyamira) is investigating the disturbing mass failures at KSL following a petition by Abdalla Suleiman and Elkana Kitur.
The university deans also proposed that the current nine courses offered at KSL, excluding pupilage, should be reduced to seven, noting that some of the units are already being taught at law schools in universities.
“We recommend that Parliament amends the Second Schedule of the Legal Education Act, 2012, with a view to reducing the workload in the ATP to a maximum of seven subjects,” Wekesa said.
Thondu argued that the students’ failure at the KSL is caused by a shortage of lecturers, congested rooms and shortage of learning materials.
But Strathmore University law lecturer and examiner Allan Mukuki said the marks students get at KSL are a true reflection of their effort.