The proposed new education system has faced its first hurdle as Prime Minister Raila Odinga and teachers said it may not be the best for the county.

Prime Minister Raila Odinga

This came as the giant Kenya National Union of Teacher (Knut) vowed to rally education stakeholders in rejecting the proposals, if the traditional roles of Teachers Service Commission are altered.

Another opposition came from the Elimu Yetu Coalition that said the needed Sh1.4 trillion to anchor the system would be expensive.

Speaking over the weekend in Machakos, Raila said education matters cannot be managed ‘singe handedly’, adding that it needs sobriety and inclusivity.

“A few people cannot sit down and say this is the best way to go for Kenya. We must sit and agree after thorough consultation of major education stakeholders,” he said.

The premier said the current education system may have its flaws but cautioned against writing off some of the good aspects.

“We must also know why we left 7-6-3 for the current 8-4-4 system. There must be lessons to be learnt and we must get better ways of addressing them,” he said.

Knut said TSC must be allowed to recruit teachers and manage them as has been the practice.

Union officials from 14 branches in Nyanza Province termed some recommendations retrogressive.

“We will not accept intimidation of teachers by forcing them to work on contracts. This proposal is unprofessional and unwarranted. Teachers should work without fear,” said Nyamira branch secretary Richard Kibagendi during a press conference in Kisii.

Shooting down

The Prof Doughlas Odhiambo taskforce has recommended a formula that will see pupils complete two years in Early Childhood Development Education, six years in primary, another six years at secondary, and at least three years at the university (2-6-6-3).

If adopted, there will be no more KCPE and KCSE exams.

Speaking at Kenya Institute of Education after receiving the report, Education Minister Sam Ongeri cautioned against shooting down the report without basis.

“I want this document to be read thoroughly and discussed soberly. Then Kenyans to make well informed decisions. Don’t just dismiss it because you want to do it,” he said.

The public has up to end month to scrutinise the document ahead of a stakeholder’s forum next month.

By Augustine Oduor, The Standard

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