By AUGUSTINE ODUOR
Education minister Mutula Kilonzo’s ban on tuition has come under heavy criticism from teachers unions.
Kenya Secondary School Heads Association (Kessha) and the Kenya Primary School Heads Association asked the minister to consult widely before imposing the ban.
Kessha national chairman Cleopas Tirop said candidates must be allowed to revise areas that were not well covered in the syllabus.
“The minister knows that the current system lays a lot of emphasis on examinations. Parents agree that their children be coached ahead of national examinations because they know the consequences of failing. The minister will not help them when they fail,” he said.
On Wednesday, Mutula appeared to have softened his stance when he said the Ministry of Education would not be concerned by privately arranged holiday tuition as long as it is not conducted in schools.
He, however, warned that the Teachers Service Commission would discipline any school head or teacher who will contravene the directive.
Addressing a press conference yesterday Mutula said he cared less if tuition is conducted “under trees or away from schools”. “The TSC code of conduct and ethics says a public officer shall not charge or accept any fee for tuition of a student, even if the tuition is given outside official working hours,” he said.
Mutula also warned that he would disband any school boards that will condone the practice.
He said tuition is a violation of children’s constitutional right as provided for under the Bill of Rights.
“Article 53(2) provides that a child’s best interest are of paramount importance in every matter concerning the child. As the minister, I will not sit back and watch these rights violated,” he said.