Schools need more space: Researcher

National, Normal

The National, Friday July 31st, 2015

 By Henry Pambuai


THE Government has been urged to provide enough rooms in schools to cater for all children, including those attending early childhood education institutions.

Dr Arnold Kukari, the National Research Institute researcher and Universal Basic Education programme leader, said two out of every three six-year-olds were denied access to elementary prep in 2007.

He said there was shortage of space in schools

“There is a serious shortage of space or a bottleneck not only at the primary level but at the secondary level,” he said.

“Many students are unable to access or progress because there is limited space.”

Kukari said 41.7 per cent of children between the ages of six and 14 were left out of school in that year. He said one of the main reasons was that priority was given to older children.

He said that was because many schools had a system of taking in new students every two years when they should be enrolling every year.

“So some six-year-olds are likely to enrol when they are seven,” he said.

He urged authorities to prioritise early childhood education because the younger the children were, the more inquisitive they would be.

“We are hoping that in the future this critical area will be developed so that it would provide a foundation for our children,” he said.

Former National Research Institute director Dr Thomas Webster suggested that the Government and stakeholders build more elementary schools to ease the bottleneck at the primary school level.