Paid Internships, Interest Free HELB Loans- Inside Ruto's Education Plan

  • Photo collage of Deputy President William Ruto attending different graduation ceremonies
    Photo collage of Deputy President William Ruto attending different graduation ceremonies
    File
  • Deputy President, William Ruto, has released his education charter detailing an ambitious plan to change the face of education in the country.

    Through a document seen by Kenyans.co.ke on Friday, June 24, Ruto explained his game plan that is aimed at improving the quality of education and ensuring that it is affordable and accessible to all Kenyans.

    The charter cuts across all levels of education from early childhood education, primary, and secondary schools and to institutions of higher learning.

    Plans for institutions of higher learning

    File Photo of Students Lining up to Submit Their HELB Details at Anniversary Towers Nairobi
    File Photo of Students Lining up to Submit Their HELB Details at Anniversary Towers Nairobi
    File

    The Kenya Kwanza presidential candidate through the charter has promised to introduce a one to two year paid National Internship Programme for all students graduating from learning institutions through a harmonious collaboration with the private sector. 

    The former Eldoret North Member of Parliament has also promised to secure interest-free HELB loans for students and double the current funding to the institution from Ksh11 billion to Ksh22 billion.

    On top of that, he has also promised to increase Vocational Centers and Technical universities.

    "Establish a Vocational Training Centre (VTC) in each of the 1,450 wards in Kenya. The Kenya Kwanza administration will allocate conditional grants to county governments within its first one year to ensure that in addition to the existing 1,200, we will construct 250 VTC in wards that are currently lacking," his charter read in part

    "Increase the number of Technical Universities from the current three to eight; at least one in every region and ensure all TVETs are linked to universities by developing a credit transfer framework to support academic progression."

    Basic Education plan

    In his plan for basic education, Ruto has promised to employ 58,000 teachers at a cost of Ksh25 billion per year to bridge the shortage in schools across the country.

    The second in command has also promised to strengthen day secondary schools to guarantee access to quality education and reduce the cost of education. 

    "Establish a National Elimu Fund that will be mandated with regulating, mobilizing, dispersing and managing all education
    grants, bursaries, and scholarships from both private and public sponsors. The fund will cater for accommodation and related costs," the charter read.

    Ruto has also promised to address the issue of school going girls by providing free sanitary towels for all primary and secondary school students.

    "Enforce a 100 per cent return to school policy for all teenage mothers and ensure that they automatically benefit from existing government bursary initiatives."

    To address problems raised by principals regarding the running of schools, Ruto has promised to work with different stakeholders to introduce special packages for all schools.

    "In order to cushion schools with low enrollment and enable them to meet school operational fixed cost, introduce a Minimum Essential Package (MEP) to public primary and secondary schools, to ensure consistent access to basic services by all public schools.

    "Introduce a Special Service Tariff for all learning institutions for basic utilities to facilitate their seamless access and connectivity. These include; electricity, water, and internet connectivity for digital learning that often consumes a huge chunk of school budgets," his charter added.

    The United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party leader has also promised to ensure students from marginalised areas get the same treatment and allocation of government resources.

    He, however, did not detail his full plan on how he intends to change from the current Competency-Based Curriculum which was rolled out by President Uhuru Kenyatta's administration.

    Students seat for a KCSE exam
    Students seat for a KCSE exam.
    File