KISUMU, Kenya, Nov 19 – Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha on Thursday cautioned school managers against sending students back home over fee arrears saying school managers explore dialogue with parents and guardians instead.
Magoha said the government will not condone such acts from school heads whom he insisted had no authority at the moment to send away students.
“I would like to very firmly plead with our teachers that they have no permission from anybody to send a child home because of school fees,” he said.
Magoha was speaking to journalists at Kosawo Primary School in Manyatta where he assessed the delivery of desks in schools.
Magoha said the government is out to help parents during the COVID-19 pandemic by having their children retained in school.
He called for dialogue with the ministry of education officials whenever a school is in crisis instead of sending learners away who are trying to catch up on the lost time.
The CS said most boarding secondary schools had preserved a lot of food that was meant for students during the long holiday hence they have no reason whatsoever to send away learners for fee arrears.
“We had a lot of food which we delayed from giving back to students when they are at home,” he said.
He announced that the directive on school fees also cuts across to private schools where he said school managers should engage parents with fee arrears in a bid to seek avenues to resolve the matter.
Magoha said the government is aware of the hard economic times occasioned by the pandemic and will do everything to cushion parents from rogue school head teachers.
He however called upon parents to prepare adequately to pay for school fees for the second term when schools open officially in January 2021.
“We expect our parents to struggle when we open in January to pay fees for the second term, there is no argument there,” he said.
Magoha appealed for sincerity among parents noting that those capable of paying should do so without being compelled.
He said the ministry will only listen to parents who cannot afford to pay completely to strike a balance to enable schools to run uninterrupted.
The CS announced that he is pleased with quality of desks that are being delivered to schools as per government specifications.