The current classes seven and eight will be used to host junior secondary classes in primary schools once the 8-4-4 system in primary schools is gone.
In 2023 the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) will spill over to junior secondary. Junior secondary school will comprise of Grades 7, 8 and 9.
In 2023, pioneer learners under the new 2-6-3-3-3 CBC system will transition to junior secondary school after sitting the Grade Six national examinations.
The Basic Education Principal Secretary Julius Jwan said that the junior secondary school will be domiciled both in secondary and primary schools and that the two classes will be made use of.
“Classrooms used by pupils of class seven and eight will remain vacant due to the introduction of the CBC. But the classrooms will not go to waste because they are public resources. Instead, they will be used by students of Junior secondary schools,” Jwan said.
However there is still confusion whether primary school heads will be in charge of junior secondary classes inside primary schools.
Yesterday Education CS Prof. George Magoha revealed that the government has so far constructed more than 700 classrooms across the country to aid in the implementation of Competence Based Curriculum(CBC).
Speaking while he toured St Mary’s Mukunike high school in Kangundo, Machakos County the CS said over 10% of the required classrooms have been completed.
Area MP Fabian Kyule who accompanied Magoha applauded the government for fast tracking the construction of classes which he said will highly boost the CBC program.
The CS warned against politicizing CBC maintaining that the curriculum is learner oriented hence the best for the country’s education system.
However the new State department overseeing the implementation of Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC) is on to a rough start after the Treasury reduced its allocation for the year starting July.
The Treasury has allocated the Implementation of Curriculum Reforms department Sh339.9 million against a funding request of Sh911.9 million.
The budget will cover a period when the CBC moves to Grade 6, marking the end of primary school and the rollout of the new system to junior secondary school (Grade seven in 2023).
“The allocation will not be adequate for implementation of all our activities in a critical year when we move to junior secondary school,” Prof Fatuma Chege, the Principal Secretary for state department for the implementation of curriculum reforms told Parliament.
President Uhuru Kenyatta unveiled the department in February last year to monitor CBC rollout, track implementation and come up with mechanisms that prompt intervention.
Under the new system, elementary education is divided into pre-primary and primary education, taking two and six years respectively. Junior secondary starts from Grade Seven up to Grade Nine.
The government also allowed private schools to set up junior secondary classes to ease the transition of learners.
Education CS George Magoha said the government does not have enough land, especially in the cities, to set up all the requisite facilities ahead of the transition.
He asked private schools to start establishing additional structures to aid in the transition.
Already TSC made the announcement that it will train at least 60,000 secondary school teachers to handle junior secondary classes in March and April 2022.
PS Chege further said the Ministry is looking for influential people to go to the grassroots level, in counties and nationally to change people’s perception of the Competency-Based Curriculum.
Speaking during the education committee on budget policy statements, Chege said misinformation is the greatest challenge to CBC implementation.
Chege said this prompted the inception of a multi-sectoral technical committee on communication that deals with misinformation and giving facts.
“We would want you to be our CBC ambassadors,” Chege said.
The ambassadors will be selected using criteria developed by the ministry.
They will undergo capacity building and training to understand the curriculum.
“To be an ambassador you need to understand and feel the spirit of CBC, the capacity building in creating awareness is an activity we have planned and budgeted for,” Chege said
These ambassadors will use their positions to enlighten people, for example; musicians, athletes, politicians, artists, actors, and opinion shapers.
Other means used by the department to deal with misinformation are training and reacting to some of the lies.
This is meant to elaborate jargon used in reporting the curriculum.
For example, the issue of hosting junior secondary learners, either in primary school has elicited reactions.
“When an education officer talks about domiciling junior secondary school, a reporter will say it will be hosted, accommodated. Domiciling means the building belongs there but accommodation means they don’t belong there,” Chege said.
Some issues that have been raised by education stakeholders and leaders that seem to belittle the curriculum have been dismissed by the state.
They include gross expenses, parental involvement, rush to implement, and confusing children.