Kenya's Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) received a shot in the arm through a partnership with the Finnish government to fund the retraining of teachers on the new syllabus.
The partnership which is set to run until 2024, was made between the University of Helsinki, Laurea University of Applied Sciences and the University of Nairobi, Strathmore University and Pwani University to ensure better classroom delivery by CBC teachers.
Additionally, the project known as Training Trainers for Teacher Education and Management in Kenya (TOTEMK) is fully funded by the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs.
Speaking to the University of Helsinki media department on Tuesday, March 7, TOTEMK project lead at the University of Helsinki Seija Karppinen, stated that the project was Inspired by some of the most renowned Finnish educational methods and tools.
“We are helping our Kenyan partners to develop a scalable educational model that fits the local context and responds to local needs.
“We provide examples of best practices and approaches that have worked well, helping our local partners to build a suitable training programme,” Karppinen stated.
According to the University of Helsinki, the Finnish education system is more comprehensive than the Kenyan education system because it focuses on modernisation through the exploration of new technologies and online tools.
The statement was affirmed by Magdalene Dimba, the Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at Strathmore University, Kenya who added that the topics covered were extremely relevant to the CBC model.
The training involves an in-person training Module and an Open Online Course (MOOC) through four comprehensive core training modules, delivered to the trainees from twenty universities.
“In the Finnish teacher education system teachers study for up to 5 years before they become qualified practitioners.
“Every teacher needs to be an accomplished researcher who can develop solutions for different educational challenges and situations” a Professor of Ethics at Garissa University who is also a trainee, Robert Machyo stated.
Following CBC implementation challenges, the Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET) on March 7, asked President William Ruto to convene a crisis meeting to chart the way forward.
The teachers are in particular concerned about chaotic transition to the Junior Secondary Schools (JSS).
KUPPET Chairman Omboko Milemba suggested that the Presidential Working Party on Education Reform be disbanded claiming that the CBC taskforce relied on opinion polls instead of conducting in-depth research from education stakeholders before arriving at key decisions.