CBC in Kenya Competency Based Curriculum in Kenya www.businesstoday.co.ke
CBC requires a comprehensive change in the instructional approach in terms of teaching, learning, and assessment. [ Photo / KNA ]

The national government has continued to invest in providing access to e*******n for all. The MInistry of E*******n seeks to transform the country into a globally competitive and prosperous nation by the year 2030. Its current focus is free primary e*******n, a competency-based curriculum, a 100% transition to secondary school, digital literacy and secondary e*******n quality improvement.

The e*******n sector comprises early learning and basic e*******n, vocational and technical training (VTT), university e*******n, post-training and skills development and teachers service commission sub-sectors. The proposed budget for e*******n sector is Ksh501.7 billion, a 2% increase from the previous year and comprises Ksh480.8 billion in recurrent expenditure, which has always consumed about 90% of the e*******n budget in the past. Only Ksh20.9 billion is allocated to development.

Training and recruitment

However, research findings recently released by the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) show that Kenyan schools are woefully unprepared to implement the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC) that is set to replace the 8-4-4 system. The report comes at a time the country is grappling with issues of curriculum review and the reform process, teacher training and recruitment, the formulation and implementation of a national e*******n policy and the implementation of CBC.

The research, conducted by KNUT, looked into issues of teacher preparedness, the availability, and adequacy of teaching materials, the level of engagement between teachers and parents, as well as the challenges faced by headteachers and teaching staff in implementing CBC.

It is clear, therefore, that the introduction of CBC in Kenyan schools calls for a comprehensive change in the instructional approach in terms of teaching, learning, and assessment. This requires changes in teacher training programmes, both pre-service and in-service, in order to equip teachers with the competencies that will enable them to effectively handle the challenges associated with CBC implementation in schools.

Allocation for the sector in the FY 2020/21 indicates that teacher training both for pre-service and in-service shall face enormous challenges because the budget has been scaled down by Ksh30,870,530. This now brings the question of how CBC curriculum shall be implemented if the budgetary allocation has been reduced from Ksh44,470,000 in the FY 2019/20 to Ksh13,599,470 in the next financial year.

As the government effects the 100% transition from primary to secondary schools, there is need for a rapid shift to focus on infrastructure development to enhance the capacity of the existing facilities even as the number of enrollments rises. This also should consider infrastructure for special needs.

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The Secondary School E*******n Quality Improvement Project (SEQIP), which is estimated to cost Ksh4 billion in the coming budget year up from Ksh2.8 billion in the previous year. As at the end of the previous budget year 2018/19, this programme had utilized Ksh5.2 billion of the Ksh20 billion total it is expected to cost in 2023 when it is coming to end.

This project seems to be an all-round project that funds various interventions including the roll-out of competency-based curriculum, capacity building, recruiting 289 teachers in 2018/19, procure and distribute books, infrastructure, etc.

Home learning

The COVID-19 p******c has exacerbated an already complex situation because schools have been closed indefinitely and students told to learn from home and the uncertainty of when schools should be reopened dominating the media platforms. If this situation remains the same in the next three months then the Government might reconsider its options and priorities and that might include the introduction of supplementary budgets that might slash the allocation for the programme of  CBC training of teachers.

But when all is said and done , how we emerge from the season is hugely a matter of choice.

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