How Parents Are Making CBC Expensive - Magoha

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    Education CS George Magoha speaks at a KICD conference in Nairobi on Tuesday, September 14, 2021
  • Education Cabinet Secretary, George Magoha, has dressed down parents and education stakeholders who claim that the Competency-Based-Curriculum (CBC) is an expensive education system and that it was not well planned and executed. 

    Magoha addressed stakeholders in Nairobi, in a conference held by the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) on Tuesday, September 14. 

    The CS blamed parents for making the CBC curriculum appear costly, by taking their young ones to expensive schools that demand a lot in terms of implementation of the curriculum. 

    He also reprimanded stakeholders and television pundits who allege that the government has shouldered all the burden on parents and has failed to clarify how much money was allocated to the CBC rollout. 

    Education CS George Magoha (left) at the KICD conference on Tuesday, September 14, 2021

    "It is unfair for you to ask us how much it will cost to implement CBC. That is (a question) for people who never went to school. You should be asking how much the government is allocating per learner and is it fulfilling its promise." 

    "Ask us how much is the government spending on books. Are there books recommended and provided by the government? On a ratio of 1 to 1, I will tell you yes it does. If you want to add another 10 books because you took the learners to expensive schools, then you have to pay. That is not my business, my business is to ensure registered public schools adhere to government regulations," the CS clarified. 

    He added that Kenya was among the top African countries in terms of financing and supporting education. He (Magoha), witnessed Kenya's might when President Uhuru Kenyatta toured the UK and alongside Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, raised over Ksh500 billion to improve education globally. 

    "What is it they are talking about? I was in London when raising money for students and I was shocked. Kenya is way at the top at 29.5 percent in terms of funds channeled towards education. Others were as down as 14 percent." 

    "What is it they are talking about claiming that we should fund the CBC? What they should do is challenge us to get the value for our money. When you open your mouth to rant and look like you never went to school," Magoha ranted. 

    According to the CS, it would be unfair to overlook milestones set by the CBC. He castigated stakeholders who, he accused, of lying to parents while acting as panelists and pundits on national television and other media. 

    He refuted allegations that teachers were not properly trained nor prepared for the CBC model. As a professional surgeon, Magoha explained that he was trained to be a general surgeon and that he and others of his calibre, only retrain on specific courses while specialising. 

    The CS argued that the same can be applied to teachers. Rather than training them for more years, he would rather have them trained on specific courses. 

    "Why are we making things so difficult? What do people want when they demonise one of the presidential legacy projects? If it is (for) politics, excuse me, leave me out of it. I want to assure parents and teachers that we shall do everything possible to ensure that CBC is a success.

    President Uhuru Kenyatta and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
    President Uhuru Kenyatta and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

    "Why should you go to court when you have 5 million students happy and ready to engage with the course. It is true we have challenges, but why don't you front them so that we can discuss? We have no apologies to make to anybody. CBC is here to stay," CS Magoha reiterated. 

    He also ordered schools to halt demand for printing CBC content, stating that tutors should project the topics in the classroom.

    Magoha spoke in a thinly veiled response to the outgoing Law Society of Kenya (LSK) President - Nelson Havi - who threatened to challenge the implementation of the Competency-Based-Curriculum (CBC) in court. 

    Havi, on Monday, September 9, argued that education in Kenya ought not to be expensive, inefficient and ineffective. The National Assembly Education Committee also summoned the KICD officials to address bottlenecks facing the CBC. 

    Another stakeholder who spoke against CBC was the former Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) Secretary-General Wilson Sossion who condemned CBC as a fraudulent system threatening to reverse the education milestones achieved in the country.

    Among the complaints raised by parents were pupils being encouraged to write in textbooks which were later dumped, schools asking guardians to do homework for the students and parents purchasing new commodities each day. 

    An image of Magoha-Sossion
    Education Cabinet Secretary Professor George Magoha (left) and Kenya National Union of Teachers Secretary-General Wilson Sossion (right).