The ministry of education has asked Parliament to recommend and approve allocation of extra funds to cater for junior secondary school students in January 2022 as the allocation for the JSS students has been ignored in the 2022/23 budget.
Responding to the National Assembly Education and Research committee on the Budget Policy Statement 2022, Basic Education Principal Secretary Julius Jwan and the Implementation of Curriculum Reforms secretary Fatuma Chege said the rollout of junior secondary could be paralysed should the government fail to budget for tuition.
“No capitation has been allocated to go to junior secondary school students in the budget estimates for the 2022/23 financial year,” said Jwan. Only cash for classrooms was allocated.
About 1.5 million Grade Six learners who are currently at Grade Five are expected to transit to junior secondary in January 2022.
The ministry has proposed that MPs recommend and approve Sh28 billion to cater for Grade Seven students.
Chege said junior secondary students will be hosted in secondary schools as recommended in the CBC taskforce report and that requires government’s funding.
The PS said only primary schools sharing the same compound with secondary schools and have extra classrooms may be considered to host learners in junior secondary school.
“For those that may be hosted in primary schools, we shall create a separate wing from the primary schools. Their management will also be that of secondary schools,” Prof Chege told the committee chaired by Busia Woman Rep Florence Mutua.
She said the construction of over 10,000 classrooms in secondary schools is ongoing and expected to end in April.
More funding is required to ensure more classrooms are built to facilitate a smooth roll-out of the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC), Prof Chege said.
The ministry has also requested more funding to sustain free day education. Dr Jwan said in 2022/23, his department intends to disburse Sh12.41 billion under free primary capitation to 8700,000 learners in public primary schools at a rate of Sh1, 420 per learner.
They will also distribute 6,288,653 sanitary towels to 898,379 in targeted primary schools and that will require Sh270 million, but only Sh200 million has been allocated.
Under free day secondary education (FDSE), Dr Jwan said the ministry intends to disburse capitation to 4,381,701 students at the rate Sh22,244 per learner. He, however, said the programmes have been underfunded. In the FDSE, only Sh64.42 billion has been allocated against a requirement of Sh74.53 billion, creating a deficit of Sh10.11 billion.
Funding for the construction of CBC classrooms has been cut by half. “This was a presidential directive to construct 10,000 classrooms at a cost of Sh8 billion. In the current financial year, the Treasury approved Sh4 billion. But inthe 2022/23 financial year, only Sh2 billion has been approved, instead of the Sh4 billion required to cater for infrastructure at junior secondary,” said Dr Jwan.