It is now official that primary school principals would be subjected to interdiction by their employer, the Teachers Service Commission, if they do not adhere to all Ministry of Education requirements (TSC).
Primary schools are only required to conduct three (3) tests each year, one at the conclusion of each term for the 8:4:4 and CBC classes, according to Prof. George Magoha.
Magoha chastised school principals for charging exam fees when he appeared before the National Assembly Education Committee on Thursday last week.
Prof. Magoha called the fees unconstitutional, claiming that the government contributes Sh35 per child per year to help with internal examination administration. Prof Magoha also stated that teachers should not send pupils home because they have not paid their internal examination fees.
According to the Ministry of Education, one set of exams costs at most Ksh 12 per pupil.
CS Magoha further stated that he has directed TSC to take strong action against school principals who are charging illegal extra levies in violation of Ministry of Education guidelines.
I’ve issued over 30 directives, both verbal and written, to stop the illegally imposed fees, and now it’s up to the Teachers Service Commission to take action, with some of those teachers already being apprehended,” Magoha added.
TSC interdicted the principal of Nakuru Boys High School last month for allegedly violating government tuition rules.
According to a TSC letter of interdiction, Yator Mike Kiplagat violated clause b(vi) of the TSC Act’s Third Schedule, which resulted in his position being terminated.
While you were the principal of Nakuru Boys High School in the years 2020 and 2021, you charged extra levies to students in violation of the Basic Education Act section 29,” says part of the interdiction letter.
The principal, on the other hand, was given 21 days to file his defense.
“You are invited to give a defense statement or respond to the commission in writing within 21 days from the date of this letter,” wrote Fredrick Ng’ang’a, the Nakuru County TSC Director, in a letter dated September 1.
Magoha stated that primary schools had no excuse, adding that the government has provided all public primary schools with two laptop computers to be utilized for exam printing.
“All schools received two computers per school through the Digital Learning Programme, and head teachers are encouraged to provide them to teachers to use in typing the internally set examinations,” Magoha said.
Magoha was responding to an inquiry from Owen Baya, a Kilifi North legislator, on the logic behind the fees imposed on parents to cover internal examination costs.
According to Magoha, the govt spends Sh1,420 per kid per year to all registered public primary schools in the Republic under the Free Primary Education program.
“The money is disbursed in three tranches to the individual schools’ bank accounts. 50% of the money are distributed in the first term, 30% in the second term, and 50% in the third term. The funds are intended to cover termly internal expenses. The members noted that a large number of schools currently charge fees for internal examinations.
In response to a question on whether the government has allowed extra fees approved by school boards of management, he stated that such fees should be voluntary.