Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha has ruled out postponing the re-opening of schools next week over the current upsurge of COVID-19 cases across the country.

Magoha was speaking at the 17th Kenya Primary Schools Heads Association Annual Delegates Conference in Mombasa on Tuesday.

He rubbished claims that the current rise in COVID-19 cases would alter the school calendar, saying that all schools would receive their school manual after resuming studies next week.

“Those who are afraid and are closing schools can open them when our children have already gone two years ahead” Magoha said.

In regard to COVID-19 cases which have spiked on account of the new Omicron variant, CS Magoha called on stakeholders to work together in fighting the disease.

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“I don’t know what else to ask of you rather than to pray for your health; Magoha stated.

At the same time, the CS defended the Competence-Based Curriculum (CBC) urging stakeholders who are opposed to the education system to embrace it as it is here to stay.

He further warned them against adding extra levies to the school fees and forcing parents to pay.

“You must not send a child home for extra charges, that is criminal. If you want to levy children, then you must do so at your own cost and at your own risk,” the CS stated.

Magoha asked headteachers to let learners report to school with whatever amount the parents are able to raise. He further recommended that the schools make arrangements on how the balance will be cleared.

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“We have already told the teachers to take what the parent brings to school and agree on how the parent will continue,” he remarked.

School heads who will be found contravening the directive will be dealt with by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC).

The directive comes after a section of parents requested for the reopening date to be pushed forward citing inability to raise school fees owing to the biting effects of the covid-19 pandemic

Magoha maintained that the academic calendar would go on as planned. He promised headteachers and principals that the government  would remit its payments  to the schools before they officially open.

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The Education boss also shed light on the preparations for next year’s national examinations.

He revealed that there would be five national examinations in 2022 including the 2021 Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) and Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) which will be held in March.

“There will be three of them, the normal KCPE and KCSE then grade six exams. Those three will be done in December (2022),” he noted.

Magoha disclosed that all the five examinations will be ready by March, 2022

Over 5000 school heads are attending the meeting scheduled to conclude on Thursday

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