It won’t be business as usual once schools reopen after the covid-19 pandemic. With the schools closed the coverage of the syllabus had to grind to a halt leaving students in disarray. However with the government anticipating things going back to normal, plans on how students will recover lost time have emerged.
In a statement presented to the National Assembly’s Committee on Education and Research, the Ministry of Education indicated that they had postponed re-opening dates for all learning institutions to June 4. “The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic led to closure of schools on 15th March, three weeks earlier than scheduled. The ministry has further extended the second term by one month from 4th May,” said Education CS Prof George Magoha.
This would result in students missing out on a total of seven weeks of learning. In a bid to compensate for the time lost, the CS laid out measures the government will take once learning resumes. These measures will result in added time to ensure all learners capture what they missed.
The August holiday will be shortened by two weeks and the normal school hours, which run from 8 am to 4pm, will be increased. The second term half term will also not be spared as it will be reduced by four days.
Magoha maintained that the curriculum will be completed in time. This gives an indication that the government is still adamant that the national exams will be postponed. The KCPE exams are scheduled to start from October 26 to October 29 while the KCSE exams begin on November 2 to November 25 according to the Kenya National Examination Council timetable.
He also announced that the Ministry of Health will fumigate all 460 education institutions that have been designated as quarantine centers. These institutions include 331 secondary schools, 25 universities, 36 KMTC campuses and 28 Teachers’ Training Colleges. “The selection of these schools followed a criterion that prioritized boarding facilities and proximity to the treatment facilities for Covid-19 for ease of management,” read part of the statement to the committee.
The Cabinet Secretary also said that the ministry will continue having consultations with relevant stakeholders in the education sector and government agencies before coming up with other new interventions as Covid-19 cases continue to rise.