New Kenya Education Reforms

By | June 8, 2023

Education Reforms- Final Proposals as Scrapping of Schools’ Categories and Compulsory Subjects

The Presidential Working Party on education reforms has made final recommendations on the education sector in Kenya. In the new reforms, the Committee proposes the scrapping of the categorization of secondary schools and the removal of compulsory subjects for career choices.

The Working Party recommended that the traditional categorization of secondary schools into National, Extra County, County and Sub-County schools be phased out with the 8-4-4 system; instead. under the CBC system, the schools will be categorized in line with the career pathways of learners.

In line with the CBC curriculum, the Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC) will be renamed the Kenya National Assessment Council (KNAC).

Under the changes aligned with the transition to CBC at the high school level, the party recommends that learners have options in subjects that will determine their careers. 

Consequently, learners will have to choose between combinations like English or Kiswahili, Maths or Science, and any other five subjects at the O-level of study. There will also be a number of subjects to be taken by learners at the Junior Secondary School level. 

The party has also asked the KICD to rationalize the number of learning areas at Junior High. Currently, students are expected to study a total of 14 subjects.

The party also wants the university education curriculum to be aligned with the CBC one for ease of transition.

Universities will also be prevented from offering Certificates and Diploma courses.

On the administration of universities, Chancellors and their deputies’ recruitment will no longer be appointed by the Public Service Commission and will now be done by the universities’ councils for appointment by the President through the Education Cabinet Secretary.

In other recommendations, the election of student council leaders is held every two years, while the appointment of Deans of schools and faculties in the universities will also be done competitively.

The most his body is the Teachers Service Commission, TSC, whose powers will be clipped.  The functions of the Teachers’ Service Commission (TSC), will now be narrowed to employment and remuneration of teachers; with powers to regulate teachers taken away. The Commission will though be expected to employ nursery teachers, a duty currently done by county governments. 

The changes suggested would also trim TSC’s powers by stripping it of the function of regulating the teaching profession and leaving it with only the performance of its human resource function.

Teachers’ training will also be reformed with trainee teachers now being required to undergo a one-year teaching practice before graduation.

The Working Party has also proposed that all boards on bursaries and scholarships be collapsed into one central pot, while the university funding model has already been reformed.

The Working Party has, however, maintained that the CBC system with instructions to the KICD rationalizes the system’s number of learning areas.