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Publishers gift Kisumu school with one million books



Over one million worth of textbooks have been donated to Manyatta primary school in Kisumu County in efforts aimed at enhancing literacy levels especially among children from lower income families.

The school was selected as a beneficiary of the publishers driven initiative because of its high student population which has considerably put pressure on utilisation of its existing educational resources.

Among the learning materials distributed included various textbooks, new curriculum books and storybooks.

Kenya Publishers Association (KPA) chairman Lawrence Njagi said the books donation was a supplement to what the Kenyan government is doing in provision of materials to facilitate smooth rollout of the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC).

Njagi said the donation which comprised different new curriculum textbooks was done courtesy of about fifteen publishers that are members of KPA as part their corporate social responsibility activities.

He said the initiative is an intervention to enable the government realizes the objective of rolling out the new CBC.

He noted that the books would enable empower the learners through getting the requisite skills and talents that will come in handy with the ongoing new education curriculum implementation.

“The idea is to help the learners build a library of books where they can get supplementary material for CBC thus equipping them with range of skills and competencies that would propel them to securing a bright future,” said Njagi during the donation event.

Oxford University Press (OUP) East Africa Regional Director John Mwazemba said the donation seeks to encourage the pupils’ to learn effectively under the new curriculum implementation.

Mwazemba reiterated OUP’s commitment to support education in Kenya, particularly for the vulnerable and disadvantaged children who have limited capacity to access basic learning materials.

The drive, he said is geared towards furthering the country’s Millennium Development Goals on improving education and literacy in young people.

In partnership with the Rotary Club, Mwazemba says the publisher has since donated 75,000 books to over 503 needy schools across the 47 counties in the past two years.

“We believe education is the biggest equalizer in the society hence this donation will go a long way in helping the learners realize their life-time dreams,” said Mwazemba.

He added: “We have been supporting education in Kenya for over 60 years now. And one of our main pillars is to ensure we reach as many learners with our books and make sure that the books leave a positive impact in the lives of the students.”

The donation programme has seen primary schools across Kenya benefit from Ksh 10 million worth of textbooks.

Kenya National Library services executive director Richard Atuti pledged they will donate another 400 textbooks to boost learning at Manyatta primary school.

The KPA boss reassured that publishers are keen to ensuring distribution of adequate textbooks necessary for CBC rollout.

He said they have enough textbooks ready for distribution to complement the government supply.

“The new curriculum presents learners with perfect opportunity to develop their varied talents and competencies. We are dedicated to give a supplementary support required for the successful rollout of CBC,” he added.

Njagi said: “We have enough textbooks to be distributed at the ratio of 1:1 with the government commitment on the CBC rollout.”

The school head teacher George Ochieng’ lauded the initiative, saying it came as a reprieve to the institution which is grappling with shortage of educational tools and resources because of high students’ population.

Ochieng’ says with students’ population of over 3000, the school has been struggling to share utility of the little available learning resources.

He stated that the donation come at a time the school was in serious need of support to enable effective delivery of skills to the pupils, especially with the advent of the new 2-6-3-3-3 education system will see the pupils greatly improve on their academic performance.

According to the school head, majority of the learners come from humble background hence they needed such worthy support to improve their literacy skills.

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“We are elated with this. Our school is overstretched leading to low student book ratio. Therefore the books donation has brought a sigh of relief to us,” said Ochieng’.

The textbook donation was culminated into by the publishers’ 19th annual book fair held in Kisumu County.

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