The Ministry of Education (MOE) has released list of schools approved to host junior secondary school section in each Sub County.
Junior secondary involves Grade 7, 8 and 9. The Grade 6 learners who sat for their Kenya Primary School Education Assessment (KPSEA) exams last year will transition to Grade 7 on 30th January 2023.
According to the new list not all primary and secondary schools will host junior secondary classes. Only those which met the Ministry requirements were approved.
Most public primary schools have however received a nod and will host the coveted junior high classes.
The Education Ministry had released a checklist that guided the countrywide assessment of schools suitability.
The Ministry had released stringent requirements that were be met for public and private schools to be allowed to host junior secondary section.
It considered the enrollment of students, the availability of facilities and security to determine which schools will host junior secondary school and which ones will be merged.
For teachers who will teach junior secondary school at Grade 7, 8 and 9, it said they must have a minimum of a Diploma or a Degree certificate.
The assessment started on 9th January and ended on 20th January 2023. The checklist document said FEEDER SCHOOL will be those Primary School lacking the enrolment and/or infrastructural capacity to domicile a JSS.
In such cases, it said it will transfer the learners to a neighbouring JSS or implement appropriate affirmative action to ensure 100 percent transition.
In high density areas and urban informal settlements Primary Schools with an enrolment of less than 45 learners or those lacking the basic facilities to hosta JSS served as Feeder Schools to other JSSs within a 2 kilometres proximity.
In geographically expansive, low density and insecurity prone areas, as well as for learners with special needs and disability, the Government through the Ministry of Education implemented affirmative action, regardless of the enrolments.
The School were judged Good, Fair or Poor as tabulated below;
|75 – 100%
|The school is recommended for registration to offer the JSE curriculum as it has met most of the requirements.
|50 – 74%
|The school has met some requirements but a second assessment is required for its registration to offer the JSE curriculum.
|The school has not met most of the requirements and has not been recommended for registration to offer the JSE curriculum.
Other parameters the Ministry looked at are; the number of teaching and non-teaching staff, the equipment available at the schools, the size and ownership of the land, at least two extra classrooms for JSS, availability of laboratory and workshop, physical infrastructure available including sanitation, food handling and sufficient playground.
More details are contained in the draft Junior Secondary transition guidelines. The Government is keen to ensure that even though Junior Secondary will be domiciled in primary institutions, the two levels of learning will remain distinct.
Some schools Board of Management (BOMs) have already approved the uniforms to be used by the Grade 7 learners in February.
The Grade 7 learners will have distinct uniforms to distinguish them from their primary school counterparts.
Primary school head teachers will act as the principals of the junior secondary schools until the end of this year.
The head teachers will also be the secretaries of junior secondary boards of management and will oversee the financial management of the high school wing.
Students in Junior Secondary school will also get government capitation per child as is presently done for other high school learners.
The government will give Sh15,000 per learner as capitation to facilitate free learning for Junior Secondary in public schools.
Education Cabinet Secretary (CS) Ezekiel Machogu cautioned heads of schools from charging any levy to students in Junior Secondary warning that such cases will be met with harsh disciplinary measures.
‘‘President William Ruto has directed that the National Treasury set aside Sh15,000 per learner as capitation to facilitate free learning in all public schools. In total, the Government will spend Sh9.6 Billion for the learners in Junior 6 Secondary Schools this calendar year,’’ Machogu said.
‘‘It, therefore, means that no school should charge any fees for Grade 7 learners unless such schools have boarding wings. Prohibition of public schools from charging any admission fee for any Grade Seven learner due to the 100 per cent transition policy in the same school where the learners were enrolled in Grade Six.’’
Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development CEO, Charles Ong’ondo said learners in all public primary schools will have books in the 12 compulsories and two optional learning areas.
Ong’ondo said the textbooks will be available in schools before schools open.
‘‘The weight the government has carried for all the learning areas and the optional ones, the government supplies a book for every learner in every subject, starting January 30.
Ong’ondo says, even with the government buying the books, it will not restrict schools to mandatory books.
‘‘The other books will still be available to the learners to buy because the other books we have approved are okay,’’ he stated.