Private schools a threat to public institutions: Sossion

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Head teachers have raised alarm over the rapid increase of private schools in the country saying they are now threatening the existence of public institutions.

According to Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) secretary general Wilson Sossion, the greatest challenge in the education sector at the moment is privatisation.

“Our biggest disease is privatisation, mushrooming all over and even some of the investors are putting up poor schools next to every primary school to destroy our institutions. We must defend our public schools and we have the capacity to do it,” he said yesterday.

While speaking during the Kenya Primary Schools Head Teachers Association’s 15th annual delegates conference in Mombasa at the Kenya School of Revenue Administration, Mr Sossion urged the more than 7,500 head teachers in attendance to defend government-funded schools.

The KNUT boss also extended an olive branch to Education bosses and the teachers’ employer in a bid to resolve issues affecting the sector.

“I hope Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha and TSC will engage all of us so that we can work better in 2020. I sit on the global platform of campaigning for quality public education and fighting privatization, we must unite for quality education there’s no other option,” he insisted.

He said KNUT is not fighting any policies as he called for a sit-down with CS Magoha to review the gaps and address the challenges, adding that KNUT is not at war with the government.

The unionist said he has been savagely attacked over the new curriculum as he threw his weight behind the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) on condition teachers are properly trained and not through seminars.

“It is not political for us to ask for proper training for everyone from head teachers to class room teachers so that we can deliver. You must also be given quality teaching and learning tools because it is a completely different curriculum. Interpreting CBC designs and teaching, you must capacity-build teachers, it must be intensive preparation so that we can deliver well,” he added.

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Didan Odhiambo