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Huge number set to join strained secondary schools



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Headteachers of secondary schools will have to put up with a huge number of students set to join their institutions in January as the government implements the second phase of 100 per cent transition.

The latest report by Auditor-General Edward Ouko reveals that most schools are congested.

A good number of the 1,052,364 candidates whose Kenya Certificate of Primary Education examination results were released on Monday will join an estimated 800,000 students who transited to secondary schools last year under the programme.

The schools will be required to have adequate classrooms, desks, chairs, laboratories and teachers to provide quality education.

The Teachers Service Commission had requested that the government provide money to recruit 12,000 teachers annually to handle the high population but it was allocated funds to recruit only 7,000 teachers this year.

Mr Ouko, in a shocking report tabled before Parliament recently, disclosed that the 85 newly upgraded secondary schools did not have adequate dormitories, libraries and teachers, among other crucial infrastructure.

“To cope with the situation, some schools had introduced triple-decker beds in the dormitories contrary to the quality assurance standards that require beds to be either single or double-decker,” reads the report.

The report also pointed out that the schools had no library services while others had converted classrooms into libraries.

On Monday, Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang appeared to assure school heads that they will receive capitation on time.

“We will ensure that schools have resources that they need for their activities before schools reopen,” said Dr Kipsang.

Schools over the years have received capitation late and headteachers have had to protest before the government would release the money. Next week, principals will receive the number of candidates that they will admit when the selection exercise starts.

Most of the students will be eyeing elite national schools that continue to attract a huge number of applications. Very few students are willing to join the upgraded national schools.

All candidates who scored 400 marks and above will join national schools.