Activists in court to stop school reopening over Covid-19 fears

Activists in court to stop school reopening over Covid-19 fears

Seven activists have moved to court to stop reopening of learning institutions during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The activists, Michael Otieno, Evance Oloo, Mary Akach, Irene Ojwang, Robert Oluoch, Millicent Adhiambo and Evans Odhiambo claim that many children from poor and rural areas are disadvantaged by the ongoing virtual learning.

In the suit filed against the Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha, the Attorney-General and the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD), the activists argue that there are learners who lack access to electricity, have special needs or have been affected by floods besides the Covid-19 pandemic.

They opposed the reopening of schools without consideration of guidelines issued by UNESCO.

“Recognising that the concept of education is the most fundamental duty and necessity in any democracy, children are the supreme assets of any nation being the greatest gift to humanity, they deserve equality, right to life and highest standards of attainable health status,” they said.

According to the UN guidelines on reopening of schools amid the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, public health and socio-economic factors must be central to national and local authorities’ decisions on this matter after assessing the associated benefits as well as risks to education.

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