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Release second term funds, school heads urge Education ministry

Tuesday July 21 2020
heads

Kessha Chairman Kahi Indimuli who has asked the Ministry of Education to release second-term funding. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By FAITH NYAMAI

Kenya Secondary School Heads Association (Kessha) Chairman Kahi Indimuli has asked the Ministry of Education to release second-term funding.

He said schools cannot meet their monthly obligations, including paying staff.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, schools sent non-teaching staff who include matrons, cooks, librarians, watchmen, nurses and drivers on unpaid leave.

More than 72,000 teachers hired by school boards of management across the country are in the same predicament.

“It should not be assumed that schools have no bills to settle when learners are at home. The money for schools was budgeted for and it should have been released by now,” Mr Indimuli told the Nation Monday.

DEMANDING PAY

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He added that security guards, who have been on duty since the students were sent home in March, are demanding pay.

“The classrooms, offices, dormitories, laboratories, dining halls and other buildings need to be cleaned too. Those who do these jobs need to be paid,” he added.

Mr Indimuli said principals whose schools were used as Covid-19 quarantine centres spent a considerable amount of money on the programme.

More than 359 schools were designated as quarantine and isolation stations before the Ministry of Education stopped the plan.

Kenya Primary Schools Heads Association (Kepsha) chairman Nicholas Gathemia said the institutions solely depend on the government to run their programmes.

“The schools have turned into bushes while others have been broken into and property stolen. Our guards cannot work without pay,” he said.

USING OWN MONEY

Last week, Mr Gathemia said heads persuaded the ministry to stop distributing Grade Five books because schools do not have transport.

“Heads cannot use their money for school activities,” Mr Gathemia said.

The ministry released Sh32.5 billion to schools for first term.

Secondary school principals want to ministry to release funds meant for development and other activities.

Heads are required to ensure health protocols are observed before schools reopen next year.

SAFETY OF LEARNERS

“We need the funds to buy tanks, sanitiser, thermo guns and put in place other measures for the safety of learners,” Mr Indimuli said.

He added that schools require money for fumigation.

The heads also want the ministry to begin delivering face masks for learners as promised several weeks ago.

Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha said schools would be supplied with 24 million masks.

Prof Magoha said every learner would be given two reusable masks when the academic year begins.

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