, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 7 – The Ministry of Education has launched a National Steering Committee that will spearhead talks on curriculum reforms.
Speaking during the launch on Thursday, Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i said the taskforce which comprises various stakeholders will give proper direction to the process for a comprehensive curriculum review.
The CS revealed that the taskforce has 36 members which include teachers unions and faith-based organisations and is expected to deliver the new guidelines within two months.
“We are going to be inclusive and we will be very consultative in doing this. We in the education sector must now live with this new reality that we must work together. No one has got all the answers to all the questions and no one has got all the wisdom to be able to do what we need to do,” he stated.
Matiang’i also urged the committee to focus on the job at hand and not to resort to side shows especially when airing their views.
“Let as many people as possible who want to comment on the curriculum review do so. We want to have a national conversation on this issue. We want everyone to participate, to bring their views,” he said.
“If you disagree with anything that we will be doing please bring it here so that we sort it out. We do not want to create anxiety on the sector for our children, parents and on our teachers.”
A proposal by the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development is seeking to introduce the 2-6-3-3-3 system to replace the current 8-4-4 system.
At the same time, Matiang’i also announced measures that have been put in place at the Ministry to cut through the bureaucracy within the sector and enhance service delivery.
He pointed out that there is a lot of red tape even for simple processes and a lot of time and resources are wasted as a result.
He said that among the measures being put in place include the joining together of various departments into one unit for proper administration.
“We have over bureaucratized, we have over compartmentalized and as a result, we have created a perfect environment for mediocrity and buck passing,” he said.
He says this will ensure Kenyans are served expeditiously and matters of concern are dealt with in a timely manner.
“Every time you ask somebody something, the rule book is thrown at you and says that the Act says I must do ‘ABCD’. We now must collapse those things, harmonise ourselves and move forward in a serious manner,” he stressed.
He also appealed to teachers’ trade unions to embrace dialogue when dealing with issues on concern saying this will ensure matters are dealt with expeditiously.
He further discouraged them from airing their concerns in the media without first seeking how they might be resolved during dialogue.
“Most of our conversations have been characterized more by acrimony and sometimes pushing and shoving even on very fundamental issues on which we must build consensus because the focus really must be on our children,” he stated.
He instead urged the teachers unions to fully participate in the curriculum development process so that their views are also included.
“Even as we look at a number of things that we are doing here in reforming the curriculum and many other things that we know we need to do in the education sector, it is absolutely necessary that we must work together,” he said.