Education PS warns schools, politicians on use of facilities

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By OUMA WANZALA
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The government has stopped the use of school facilities and equipment for political purposes.

Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang said hiring of school buses and facilities by anyone other than public institutions must have the concurrence of the Sub-county Director of Education.

In a circular dated May 25 and addressed to school heads and other education officials on the sector’s preparedness for the general election in August, Dr Kipsang directed schools to beef-up security liaising with local security committees.

Dr Kipsang said the safety and welfare of learners and staff as well as the safety of institutional facilities is of great importance to the Ministry of Education during the electioneering period.

“It is therefore important that education processes continue without any disruption from the on-going political activities,” said the PS.

“Owing to the fact that learning institutions will serve as polling stations and that some members of staff will be engaged as election officials, the closing date has been revised to fall between July 28 and August 4,” he added.

However, Dr Kipsang said the opening date for term three on August 24 will remain unchanged.

He said partisan political activities should be avoided within learning institutions while all interactions between political parties or politicians and educational institutions should be structured, formal and documented.

“Quality teaching and learning in schools during this period must be maintained and all forms of teacher absenteeism is dealt with in line with the code of regulations for teachers,” said the PS.

He said institutions that will serve as polling stations must secure their moveable properties and a status report prior to Election Day prepared in order to ensure same state after the exercise.

“All Heads of boarding institutions must reside within school compounds as per the standing policy on the management of such institutions.

“All institutions must comply with these guidelines without exception,” adds the circular that is also copied to Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i, Interior Principal secretary Karanja Kibicho and the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) chief executive officer Nancy Macharia.

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