The new higher education funding model the government has introduced seeks to give students more access to quality education and free universities from financial challenges, the Cabinet Secretary for Education, Mr Ezekiel Machogu says, noting that the old funding model had led universities to incur a pending bill of up to Ksh70.7 billion.
He said the government had disbursed Ksh5.2billion in loans to first year students, saying this demonstrated the Government’s commitment to ensuring that the new funding model is implemented without hitches.
“The Ministry will do all it can to ensure that the scholarship kitty of the new funding model is disbursed in time to allow universities to run their programmes smoothly,” Mr Machogu said during the 6th graduation ceremony of Taita Taveta University on Friday.
The Cabinet Secretary, who had just been awarded a Honorary Degree in Humane Letters by the university, pledged to champion policies that ensure the education system is robust, inclusive and forward-looking. “Our focus will be on nurturing critical thinking, innovation and skills development to prepare our youth for the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century,” he added.
The Cabinet Secretary asked the leadership of higher education institutions to explore ways of adjusting their programmes costs, curricula, and models of delivering training in the context of rising cost of offering quality education and the diversified training needs of the job market.
Mr Machogu said it was important to review the costs, the curricula and models of instruction to equip graduates with on-demand skills in this highly competitive market place.
The Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof Fred Barasa, said the university was providing high quality education and training to its students, saying it had some of the best faculty members for this.
Present included the Chancellor of the University, Dr. Sally Kosgey, the Chairman of the Council, Prof. Isaac Mbeche, vice chancellors from public universities among other dignitaries.