Thirty four girls of Nasokol Secondary School in West Pokot were sent away on Tuesday for poor performance. The girls, most of whom are footballers, were chased away by their principal.
They were camping at Kitale Showground on Tuesday morning. The Form One and Form Three students, who are footballers and on a scholarship programme, spent their night in the cold at the showground. They were kicked out by their new principal who scrapped policies of her predecessor that were lenient on sports stars in terms of school fees payment and academic performance.
One of the students disclosed that the new principal has been taking issue with the not-so-good academic performance of learners who excel in sports. “The new principal has on several occasion informed us that we will have to look for other schools where games are given preference over academic excellence,” one of the learners said.
Their parents said the new principal summoned them to the school on Monday and informed them of the new policy that requires all students to pay school fees, including those on sports scholarship. “We came to the school in the morning but it is until in the evening that the deputy principal informed us that we had to pay the school fees or else we should take our children to other schools,” said Mr Thomas Wabomba, a parent from Kakamega.
Most of the affected students were poached from various schools for their football talent and have been learning without paying school fees. “We tried to reach a deal with the principal over modalities of starting to pay school fees but she was adamant, saying we are free to take our children elsewhere,” said Mr Saulo Tukoi, a parent. Having fallen out with the school administration on the way forward, some of the parents decided to transfer their students and were immediately ordered out of the school compound on Monday evening.
It took the intervention of a Good Samaritan, who found the parents and their children stranded outside the school gate due to lack of fare, to ferry them to Kitale. “I hired two matatus that transported them to Kitale after realizing they were stranded. We negotiated with the ASK Kitale show management to house them for the night at the field,” said Mr Moses Ngeiywa, the volunteer.