Kenya: Stakeholders Differ on School Reopening Date

Education stakeholders are once again at loggerheads on when schools should reopen as the Covid-19 Education Response Committee races against time to present its report.

On Wednesday, Kenya National Union of Teachers and Universities Academic Staff Union proposed that schools remain closed until September.

They also want this year's national examinations for Class Eight and Form Four students postponed and administered in the first quarter of 2021.

However, Kenya Private Schools Association (KPSA) insisted that schools should reopen once the Health ministry develops guidelines on safe management of Covid 19.

"Prior to the reopening, there should be media campaigns on education and reassurance that the condition has been managed and will be managed in case of resurgence. Opening of schools should be phased with priority given to senior classes," said the association.

However, Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers proposed partial opening of schools by June 15, beginning with for national examination candidates.

In a memorandum to the committee, Kuppet proposes that students in Form Three, classes Six and Seven be admitted to schools by August.

Speaking during a joint press conference in Nairobi on Wednesday, the unions, Kenya Human Rights Commission, Kenya Medical Practitioners Pharmacists and Doctors Union and Forum for African Women Educationalists - Kenya and Elimu Tuitakayo Network added a twist to the debate.

"Reopening of schools, colleges and universities must be transparent, phased and coupled with clear communication by the government and public universities, colleges and schools," they said in a statement.

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