A teachers’ union has objected to the punishment of their members who engage in holiday tuition.
Kenya National Union of Teachers argues that holiday tuition helped weak pupils to catch up and the decision should be left to parents and teachers.
“The idea of holiday tuition is to strengthen weak pupils,” said Knut chairman Wilson Sossion.
Kenya Primary School Heads Association asked the ministry to resolve the issues surrounding holiday tuition before banning it.
“Given the two months we still have to the national exams, and the way exams create unhealthy competition for spaces in national schools, candidates who are unprepared will start to panic,” association chairman Joseph Karuga said.
He went on: “We will need to meet the minister to iron out a few issues because we know that if we had enough spaces in nationals schools, holiday tuition would not be there at all.”
Education minister Mutula Kilonzo wants holiday tuition abolished because it limits pupils’ right to enjoy the vacation with parents. It was outlawed in 2009 through a circular by the ministry.
The minister said on Monday he would seek a law to criminalise the practice.
Mr Sossion, however, said remedial classes benefited pupils.
“Some students require extra or remedial teaching because some have special needs and might not absorb what ‘normal’ students do,” he said.
Kenya National Parents and Teachers Association chairman Nathan Baraza supported the ban, saying school holidays should allow children to develop other talents while those with special needs should be given remedial classes.
“We are forgetting that children need to develop other talents, know and learn about their surrounding to grow as whole human beings,” he said.