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December 14, 2018

100% transition plan impossible – Knut

Garissa KNUT executive Abdirizak Hussein [L] has a word with the assistant National treasure Ali Abdi during a press briefing in Garissa town yesterday. /STEPHEN ASTARIKO
Garissa KNUT executive Abdirizak Hussein [L] has a word with the assistant National treasure Ali Abdi during a press briefing in Garissa town yesterday. /STEPHEN ASTARIKO

Knut has faulted the government’s plan for 100 per cent transition to secondary school, saying there is not enough space for those joining Form 1.

Kenya National Union of Teachers executive Abdirizak Hussein yesterday said it will not be possible to place more than 20,000 KCPE candidates in Garissa in the county’s 35 secondary schools.

He said the schools lacked teachers, proper infrastructure and amenities for adequate learning.

“This region has suffered immensely due to insecurity which caused hundreds of teachers to flee. They haven’t been replaced by the Teachers Service Commission,” Abdirizak told a press conference in Garissa.

He said the idea of all students joining Form 1 after sitting their KCPE exam was good.

“But unless we address the challenges facing these secondary schools, we might not go far with the idea,” he said.

While releasing this year’s KCPE exam results last month, Education CS Amina Mohamed said all candidates will get slots in Form 1. Knut assistant national treasurer Ali Abdi said the ministry was implementing policies without involving stakeholders. He said stakeholders support the transition plans but asked the government to consult.

“The government must address the issues we have raised, otherwise the idea is doomed to fail,” Abdi said.

A total of 1,032,334 students sat the 2017 KCPE exam ,with only 31,337 to be placed in national schools.

The number includes all the 12,222 candidates who scored 400 marks and above, 19 special needs candidates and the top five candidates of either gender from every subcounty. Critics of the 100 per cent transition plan say there are not enough spaces for all the candidates. But Amina last week said the ministry is mapping vacancies in all categories of secondary schools to ensure every student joins Form 1 next year.

A principal of a subcounty secondary school in Garissa said it would be impossible to admit all the students from five nearby primary schools.

“Even if you say they will learn under the trees, where are the teachers?” the principal asked.

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