16 February 2017

Kenya: Report Reveals Disregard of Rules on Promotions in Varsities

Universities are flouting guidelines on promotion of academic staff, an audit has revealed.

"There were cases of promotion without merit and promotions based on degrees from foreign institutions that have not been submitted to the Commission for University Education for recognition and continued hiring of assistant lecturers," part of the report says.

The audit showed that there were instances where universities did not provide all information on promotion.

"In one university, out of 68 members of staff promoted, only 10 cases were presented to the commission during the audit," the report added, with CUE raising doubts about CVs, especially at the level of professor and associate professor.

The institutions are supposed to implement guidelines on harmonised minimum criteria on appointment and promotion of academic staff drafted in 2014.

"Universities have challenges in complying with the 2:1 ration of full time academic to part-time staff. Most universities had ratios of 1:2.

"The worst were cases of 1:42 and 1:72, where the only full time worker was the campus coordinator," the audit added.

The number of non-academic staff was found to be high in relation to the academic staff, thereby straining resources allocated to the core functions of teaching and learning.

The audit shows that, in many universities, the lecturer to student ratio is prejudicial to quality teaching, research and assessment.

"This is the greatest challenge to the provision of quality education. The Commission has directed universities to ensure class sizes and staff to student ratios are within allowable limits," states the report.

During the launch of the report at Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development Thursday, Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang'i assured Kenyans that recommendations made in the report would be implemented.

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