The new Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) may suffer a major blow as the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) chairman Nelson Havi is set to challenge it in court early next week.
According to Havi parents outcry over the new curriculum is overwhelming hence he is left with no option but to present a petition to challenge the validity of CBC.
“I have heard your cries parents, guardians and teachers. The petition challenging CBC will be filed next week. The education system in Kenya should not be an expensive, inefficient and ineffective experiment with our children and their future as is our leadership,” he said.
The new curriculum is facing a myriad of challenges and opposition from different quarters.
Recently the foremer Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) secretary general Wilson Sossion termerd it a fraudulent curriculum.
“CBC is a fraudulent curriculum that is being forced on the nation of Kenya and it was rolled out without a professional perspective,” he argued.
According to Sossion, the new CBC system of education is more of an extortionist scheme that has dented parents’ pockets by forcing them to buy unnecessary learning materials.
He further claimed that teachers are finding it difficult to adapt the curriculum since they have not received enough training.
Some parents have expressed concerns about the expense of the new curriculum which is to replace the 8-4-4 system.
Their anger mostly due to the many books and materials they have been asked to buy for their children who recently started the first term of the 2021 academic calendar.
However it emerged that teachers make avoidable mistakes that make learning expensive to parents and assignments complicated for children.
Parents are also on the spot for failing to be involved in their children’s learning by questioning teachers accused of going overboard.
Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) says most teachers have failed to be reactive in their interpretation of the curriculum designs.
“The curriculum designs have what we call suggested learning activities in different learning areas, which should be applied according to the school context,” says KICD Director Charles Ong’ondo.
This means teachers must understand the specific learning outcomes expected of each lesson strand and come up with creative practical ways to enable children to understand what they were taught.
Fatuma Chege, the Principal Secretary of State Department for Implementation of Curriculum Reforms, says a teacher must be creative to know skills that need to be developed.
“Teachers must know ways they can use to teach a similar skill without overloading parents and this is something teachers are taught. The skill of cleanliness, for example, can be taught without everyone going to the market to slash and sweep,” says Prof Chege in regard to Grade 3 Knec assessment on cleaning the market.
The Ministry of Education, together with Teachers Service Commission (TSC) and other stakeholders including KICD have planned training of teachers on the new curriculum.
On Thursday 30th September, 2021 selected P1 and ECDE teacher applicants for Diploma upgrading programme will report to their respective colleges to study a nine month Diploma upgrade course.
TSC has also made public its plan to retrain high school teachers on the new curriculum.
Already details show that new classrooms may not be constructed in most public schools ahead of the major transition of CBC pioneers to junior secondary schools.
In the anticipated transition of Grade Six learners in 2023, parents and education stakeholders have questioned the level of preparedness of secondary schools to receive the students.
A Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC) task force report projects that the government needs to create 1.5 million classes to cater for anticipated double intake of learners in 2023.
The team, led by Prof Fatuma Chege who is now the Principal Secretary of State Department for Implementation of Curriculum Reforms, said 2023 will experience double intake and will require huge infrastructure.
The learners will transition to junior secondary school after sitting a national examination at Grade Six.
The report says the total number of Grade Six and Standard Eight learners expected to join secondary school in 2023 will be 2,571,044.
The available secondary school spaces at present is only 1,081,900.
“This indicates a significant shortfall of 1,489,144 places in secondary schools in 2023,” reads the report.
The government has only allocated Sh4 billion this financial year towards infrastructure development in schools.
But with the estimation of the Ministry of Public Works that constructing a new classroom would cost Sh1.2 million, only 4,000 new classrooms would be constructed.
Yet, with the expected enrolment, 37,000 new classrooms would be required.