Following recent move by TSC to recall teachers to class for eventual reopening of the learning institutions plans are already in top gear for the teachers to undergo a two week Covid-19 training when schools reopen next week.
Already top ministry of education officials have been briefed on the training which will begin from the counties for master trainers in the first week who will later train the teachers in the second week before learners report back to schools in the following week.
Sources at the stakeholders meeting at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) have said they have proposed reopening of schools for KCPE and KCSE classes this October 5th and for the rest of the classes in November 2nd.
On Monday the Ministry issued a directive for vacation of the quarantine and isolation facilities to allow for preparations ahead of reopening.
“Arising from the above, and aware that the public schools were used both as quarantine and isolation facilities, we are requesting that these schools are vacated and fumigated by the 28th September, 202O to enable the heads of schools to prepare them for eventual reopening,” read a circular by Education PS Belio Kipsang.
The training which was earlier intended to be spread over two months, when the opening date was set for January with schools expected to open next month, has now been squeezed into two weeks.
The training involves how to;
- Promote and demonstrate regular hand washing and positive hygiene behaviors aimed to slow spread of Covid-19 and monitor their uptake. Ensuring adequate, clean and separate toilets for girls and boys
2. Clean and disinfect school buildings, classrooms and especially water and sanitation facilities, particularly surfaces that are touched by many people (railings, lunch tables, sports equipment, door and window handles, toys, teaching and learning aids etc.)
3. Increase air flow and ventilation where climate allows (opening windows, use of air conditioning where available, etc.)
4. Post signs encouraging good hand and respiratory hygiene practices
5. Ensure trash is removed daily and disposed of safely
Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha is expected to chair a National Steering Committee whose membership will comprise Chief Administrative Secretary Zack Kinuthia, Early Learning and Basic Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang, Health Principal Secretary Susan Mochache, Education Ministry directors, Teachers Service Commission Chief Executive Nancy Macharia and heads of other semi-autonomous government agencies.
The team will play an oversight role in the training as well as identify priority areas and potential risks.
Activities have been lined up for master trainers at the national level, trainer of trainers at regional/county levels, sub-county education officials, curriculum support officers, deputy county commissioners and headteachers.
TSC has already issued guidelines where Teachers are directed to take part in making adequate arrangements for re-opening of schools, which shall include the following:
a) Work with relevant Stakeholders to ensure thorough cleaning of classrooms, offices, dormitories, all school amenities and ensure that the same are in habitable conditions for Learners.
b) Development of innovative strategies designed to offer psychosocial support to Learners, Parents and other Stakeholders.
c) Preparation of curriculum delivery materials including timetables, schemes of work, lesson plans and related activities for curriculum implementation and delivery;
d) Development of innovative strategies and mechanisms for curriculum implementation while upholding the Ministry of Health Guidelines and protocols for containment of the spread of COVID-19 including social distancing, regular handwashing, use of sanitizer and wearing of face masks.
e) Proper sharing of duties and responsibilities among all Teachers while making deliberate efforts to protect Staff with underlying conditions.
In the plan four other staff (deputy, senior teacher, health club teacher and one member of non-teaching staff), the board of management and the parents’ association representatives will be trained first.
Before pupils and students troop back to class, there will be institutional training and preparations targeting other teachers, subordinate staff and special needs education learner support assistants.
The training will also involve heads, deputies and senior teachers. Five modules that carry messages targeted at specific audiences will be used.
The ministry also plans to roll out a massive communication strategy to ensure success of the training.