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A delicate balancing act for school heads with FPE cash

PETER KIMANI
By - | November 30th 2012

A new survey has interesting findings on school heads’ financial skills. This was to test if the heads have the requisite skills to manage finances disbursed under the Free Primary Education (FPE) scheme.

The survey found most school heads could not balance books, let alone decide on what to prioritise when funding came.

No questions

I think it’s quite telling about their training on money matters. For the vast majority, the only financial records they have kept relate to the Building Fund, which was an endless gravy train that meant parents pay something for the duration of their children’s schooling.

After all, buildings are painstakingly slow to make, even the foundation can take years. All this while, no one keeps the books simply because there is no need to.

The Building Fund was supplemented by the Harambee Fund, which meant yet another cash-cow with an open timeline, and books did not have to balance at all. At best, it served as a petty cash kitty for the school master.

The school heads should keep using those Building Fund skills to manage FPE or any other financial schemes. They were practical strategies that guaranteed no questions would be asked as long as there is a building in sight.

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