Kenya: State to Continue Providing Free Pads to School Girls

After Covid-19 disruption, Education CAS says girls at home to receive free sanitary towels

Education Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) Mumina Bonaya has announced government plans to continue providing sanitary towels to girls while at home before schools reopen.

The provision of pads to school girls were disrupted by Covid-19 outbreak that forced schools to close.

The Basic Education Amendment Act in 2017, charges the government with providing free, sufficient and quality sanitary towels to every girl in a public basic education institution.

The CAS said provision of pads will ensure the girls are comfortable and are not lured into early marriages and immoral behaviours.

"The government is aware of the challenges our girls go through while at home in the wake of Covid-19 and plans are underway to ensure they continue receiving sanitary pads," said Ms Bonaya.

Speaking when she distributed sanitary pads to 100 bright but needy girls in Isiolo town, Ms Bonaya appealed to parents to take care of the girls and mind who they spend time with while at home.

Parents and caregivers, she said, must spare time to interact with the children so that they are not lured into drug abuse and bad company.

"We want to see all girls resume when schools reopen and parents have a key role to play in ensuring they are not preyed on by young men, lured into early marriages and drug abuse," she said. She was accompanied by Kenya Secondary Schools Heads Association (Kessha) Isiolo branch chair Abdi Diba.

TEACHER ROLE

The CAS asked parents to assume the teacher role and ensure their children continue learning while at home, noting that they were looking into empowering parents on how to assist their children in the learning process.

"Learning does not just happen in four walled classroom. There is a lot the children can learn in the home setting, including practical life skills and values," the CAS said.

On concerns over E-learning program challenges, Ms Bonaya said syllabus will continue from where it stopped when schools were closed in mid-March after Covid-19 outbreak.

She noted that the ongoing learning program is meant to ensure learners are engaged and do not forget what they learnt before they were sent home.

Before schools reopen, Ms Bonaya said, the institutions must have enough running water and ample space for constructing extra classes if need be for social distancing.

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