Private schools now want in on government’s free primary and secondary education funding. Seeing the swelling number of students in public schools, they are now more than willing to take in the excess students only if the government channels a portion of the money going into public schools to them.
In a petition signed by Kenya Private Schools Association (Kepsa) national chairperson Mutheu Kasanga, they have pointed fingers at the government for discriminating against pupils in private schools while overlooking the private schools capacity to accommodate extra students.
“In spite of the said budgetary provision, children who joined private secondary schools and were captured in the Nemis system do not benefit from Government capitation of Sh22,244, which would have lessened the financial burden and aid access to basic education for all children.
“The petitioner, therefore, proposes that the initiative of 100 per cent transition could be further headed out through placement of students in private secondary schools which have ready capacity to absorb students instead of putting up day streams in national, extra-county and county boarding schools,” read the petition.
Arguing that one of the main reasons why students transfer from public schools is the issue of congestion, they now want the government to reconsider the capitation policy for pupils and students which is often overlooked.
“This is about the rights of every Kenyan child. Since the beginning of the year, thousands of students have transferred to private schools but no one knows where the money they were getting goes. We are not telling the Government to provide money equivalent to the school fees paid but to ensure that all children in the country benefit,” argued Ms Mutheu.
While the attempts might not be fruitful almost immediately, because at the moment the government is still grappling with the additional funds to increase the number of teacher in high schools in future the legislative arm of the law will be forced to amend Section 29 of the Basic Education Act, 2013 and other relevant government policies on education funding, if the petition sparks a debate.