NO INTERNET AND ELECTRICITY

MP Sophia criticises e-learning, says rural learners disadvantaged

Ijara lawmaker says ministry has failed to consider plight of children in remote areas

In Summary

“You cannot tell me that the child in rural Ijara will sit for the same exam with a child in Nairobi. We will not accept that. We are one country and the ministry must come up with a strategy for every place,” the MP said.

Ijara MP Sophia Abdinoor
Ijara MP Sophia Abdinoor
Image: STEPHEN ASTARIKO

 

Ijara MP Sophia Abdinoor has accused the Education ministry of being insensitive to the plight of learners from poor families.

Sophia on Sunday said the ministry has failed to consider children from rural areas who have no access to electricity, laptops and internet connectivity in its e-learning programme.

The lawmaker said the ministry's insistence that the national exams will not be postponed shows it does not care about the disadvantaged learners in remote areas.

The government closed down schools in March in a move to contain the spread of coronavirus.  Since then, the ministry through Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development has been offering virtual lessons.

Sophia said the virtual lessons have left out the disadvantaged learners and created two classes of education systems.

“There are places like Ijara where we don’t have laptops, there is no internet. The Ministry of Education must re-think the plan and strategy on how to include disadvantaged children,” Sophia said.

“You cannot tell me that the child in rural Ijara will sit for the same exam with a child in Nairobi. We will not accept that. We are one country and the ministry must come up with a strategy for every place,” the MP said.

Last month, Kenyans criticised Education CS George Magoha after he said learning was continuing online in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The minister was accused of being out of touch with the reality in rural areas where learners cannot access the internet.

Others said the e-learning platform was a waste of time and was not sufficient to prepare candidates for the national exams.

Sophia spoke in her constituency where she distributed foodstuff from well-wishers worth Sh15 million to vulnerable residents of Kotile, Korisa, Hara, Ijara, Sangailu and Hulugho areas.

She also gave out Sh2 million cash to the groups.

The MP said that despite the challenges occasioned by the Covid-19 pandemic and the floods, the government must deliver on its agenda.

 “These children care less what the rest of the country is going through. What they need for now is food and education to better their future. We must strive as a country to ensure service delivery is not compromised,” she said.

Ijara deputy county commissioner Samwel Towett said the national government has enough food in its stores to cater for the vulnerable families.

 

Edited by P.O