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Government urged to increase FPE funds

22 November 2013, 16:37 Joseph Njung’eh

Nyeri - Kenya Primary Schools Heads Association (KEPSHA) on Friday asked the national government to increase funds for Free Primary Education (FPE).

Nyeri County chairman, Nicholas Gathemia, said the government’s grant in the programme still stands at KES 1,020 per child per year since 2003.

“The cost of living has shot up to more than 400 percent since 2003. By then, a pencil was costing KES 5 but currently it costs KES 20 leading to inadequate learning materials,” said Gathemia.

He raised alarm over the little grant notwithstanding that the cost of living is high.

He further said that most public schools within the region lack parental support since most parents have transferred their children to private schools.

“We have seen double streamed schools turning into single stream and others closed up due to lack of enough children since many parents are not willing to educate their children in public schools,” he noted.

Speaking in Nyeri town, Gathemia also lamented that some adults are instilling children with negative attitudes towards education.

Pressure drawn from politics, he said, has led to flushing out of teachers and head teachers rowdily from their stations of work in the presence of children, noting that the minors learn to be rioters as they grow up.

In regard to academic performance in Nyeri County, Gathemia highlighted lack of enough infrastructure and low morale among teachers as some of the contributors to low performance.

He urged the County government to provide schools with evaluation support funds whilst parents should provide resources and advice to pupils.

The chairman further asked the County government to improve Early Childhood Development (ECD) centres by providing adequate and relevant teaching and learning materials.

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