• The county has constructed 13 new classrooms in various polytechnics.
• Others have benefited from new dormitories and modern learning equipment.
The Kirinyaga administration is modernising polytechnics to improve training and take in more students amid rising demand.
The county is constructing new classrooms and dormitories, installing modern furniture and equipment and supplying training and learning materials.
Governor Ann Waiguru said they will enrol the many students who sat for KCSE exams last year and school dropouts.
Waiguru said her government has carried out massive infrastructural development in polytechnics to enhance the quality of education in the last two years.
The governor spoke in her office on Tuesday.
The government has built and equipped 13 new classrooms in various polytechnics and constructed dormitories in Nyangati, Kibingoti, Mutitu and Mucii- Wa-Urata Polytechnics.
Waiguru said reports by the Kenya National Examination Council indicate that 65 per cent of candidates scored a mean grade of D+ (Plus) and below last year.
“Though their grades may lock them out of courses offered in tertiary institutions, these students have an opportunity to pursue courses of their choice in technical and vocational training institutions,” Waiguru said.
The county currently has an enrollment of 1,311 students in 15 youth polytechnics, with 840 being male and 471 female.
This is a sharp increase from the 1,000 students the institutions had in 2017 with Kaitheri Youth Polytechnic in Kerugoya town having the highest enrolment with 360 trainees.
Waiguru said her administration is committed to ensuring sustained quality and inclusive training that produces skilled artisans and craftsmen.
Polytechnics, she said, impart marketable technical skills that enable graduates to fit into contemporary labour markets especially in the informal sector and for self-employment.
She encouraged parents to enrol their children to train for jobs in the hospitality sector, the fast-growing hair and beauty industry, furniture making, construction, clothes and textile, interior design among others.
“To join the polytechnics for the National Industrial Training Authority (Nita) qualifications, you need not have done any national exam. But for one to enrol for artisan KNEC qualifications one must be a holder of at least a KCPE certificate,” she said.
The governor asked those unable to further their education to take advantage of the government sponsorship that provides Sh15,000 grant per technical student yearly.
(edited by O. Owino)