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Donor programmes offered Sh9.8bn for education reforms

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Donors hugely financed the new curriculum, providing Sh9.8 billion.

The World Bank and USAID funded components to enable the rollout of the curriculum, which had been set for January next year. CS Amina Mohamed  pushed the full rollout to 2020. Piloting will continue next year. It had been underway in 470 schools.

Two donor projects were behind the reforms. They are the Primary Education Development Project (PRIEDE) currently on the last leg of implementation and the Secondary Education Quality Improvement Project (SEQIP) that began in September last year.

PRIEDE was sponsored at Sh8.84 billion while the Sh20 billion SEQIP project provided the remaining Sh941 million. The Sh9.8 billion acquired from the projects directly and indirectly sought to address curriculum reforms.

The project contract demands the funds be disbursed on the basis of performance. The government received Sh300 million in 2016-17 and another Sh641 million in 2017-18. With budget constraints, the project came in handy, with the government putting in place measures to prevent duplication of functions.

Read: State silent on cost of new curriculum

See also: Government cuts curriculum agency budget by Sh100m

The reforms introduce a new education system with four tiers (early years, middle school, senior school and tertiary and university). The project approved in September last year had four main components — improving quality of teaching in 30 counties, improving retention in upper primary school and transition to secondary school, system reform, and monitoring and evaluation.

Reforms on the curriculum came in the third component under Sh2 billion funding. Of this, Sh1.2 billion was set aside for curriculum development and support materials. According to 2018 Education Sector Report, the ministry spent Sh138 million of the funds this financial year on curriculum development.

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The funds were spent on development of 170 curriculum support materials for the pilot phase, while 170,000 teachers and other field officers were oriented on the CBC. Currently, teachers trained on the curriculum have undergone three sessions, each less than three weeks long. This accounts for less than 10 weeks of training.

The support materials acquired include illustration charts and curriculum designs. The project set aside Sh800 million for introduction of continuous formative assessment. The assessment was to replace the KCPE exam in primary school. The national assessment is to be conducted at the end of Grade 3 (lower primary) and Grade 6 (upper primary). 

Knec chairperson George Magoha yesterday said the development of the framework is underway. He did not, however, reveal what the council had set aside to support the assessment framework. 

Sh800 million was allocated for employment of teachers with a bias on those specialising in Mathematics, Science and English, and an extra Sh1.5 billion for capacity development. 

Through PRIEDE, the ministry distributed 7,617,068 books to pupils in public schools to achieve pupil-textbook ratio of 1:1 in mathematics for grades 1 and 2. In addition, 473,455 teachers were trained through the five early grade mathematics. The project also targeted literacy through a sub-project called Tusome. It has trained 1,043 curriculum support officers, 75,908 lower primary teachers and 22,181 primary school head teachers.

More: New 2-6-3-3-3 curriculum: How different is it from the 8-4-4 system?

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