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Poor monitoring challenge in piloting of new curriculum

Lack of  interaction among KICD officials, education staff at county level and  teachers in the pilot project threatens implementation

Minimal monitoring on the implementation of the piloting of the new curriculum remains a big challenge to teachers and education officers effecting the programme in Murang’a county.

Lack of Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) officers at the county levels makes it even tougher for the teachers handling the new syllabus, says Murang’a East Sub-county education officer Richard Ng’ang’a.

He said other parallel programmes running concurrently with the new curriculum, and they appear to be getting more attention. “Tusome and Egma programmes which were introduced in all primary schools to improve the standards of learning seem to overshadow the piloting which is being dome only in a few schools,” he said.

Ng’ang’a also said besides the initial training that the teachers were taken through at the onset of the programme, there has never been any follow-up forum for teachers to give feedback on progress. “This being a new system, it would require flow of information to help identify the challenges so that they can be rectified for better implementation,” said Ng’ang’a.

Another setback in the new curriculum is evaluation method. “Children are being examined using the old method thus the real impact cannot be established for now,” he said.

However, Ng’ang’a said pupils and their parents are excited about the programme, which, unlike the current syllabus, which is elite, based, children with different talents are set to benefit. “The syllabus is not only focusing on the academic performance of the child but it also helps them bring out their talents,” he added.

Ng’ang’a said the workload for teachers will reduce as part of the learning activities involve practical lessons, which do not require a working scheme. “The programme is ready for a take-off come next year but KICD should put more efforts in making sure it does not flop,” he said.

Rosemary Kamina, the county Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) officer said she knew little about the new programme. “No information has been disseminated to them pertaining the piloting of the new syllabus,” she said.

Kamina said lack of KICD officers at the grassroots level makes the implementation difficult as it requires frequent monitoring. She said even as the Ministry of Education plans to roll out the programme in all the schools next year, it should put better measures in place to ensure a flawless progress. “The syllabus might be good to our education system but all stakeholders need to be brought on board to make the implementation a success,” she added.

Earlier, Kisumu county Knut branch chairman Joshua Ogallo said the pilot programme has not been rolled out in schools within the county. “From our observation, implementation of the new curriculum has not taken off in our schools. As a matter of fact it has not been launched even in a single school,” says Ogallo.

The Kenya Primary Schools Heads Association (Kepsha) national chairman Shem Ndolo conquered, saying structures and required personnel are yet to be put in place to enable smooth uptake of the programme. Ndolo said for the system to work out efficiently, the ministry must first ensure there are both adequate human and physical resources in schools.

Much of the work is still in the discussion stages with the relevant stakeholders before the system can come into full operation.

“A lot of preparations are still underway before the new curriculum can take off. For instance, there is need to build capacity for teachers and the provision of enough books on the new curriculum,” said Ndolo.

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