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Parent moves to High Court to stop Competency Based Curriculum

Court ruling

A parent has petitioned the High Court seeking to suspend further implementation of the Competency-Based Curriculum for basic education.

Esther Ang’awa, who is also an advocate of the High Court, says the CBC curriculum has imposed an economic burden of procuring course books, learning materials, and curriculum designs on children, teachers, parents or caregivers ‘without regard to the real dynamics of the Kenyan population and the needs of the society’.

The national rollout of Competency-Based Curriculum started in January 2019 at Pre-Primary I and II and Grades 1, 2 and 3 in lower primary.

The 2-6-3-3-3 curriculum was billed as a game-changer in the country’s education as it seeks to plug gaps noted under the 8-4-4 system of rote learning. It is yet to be fully embraced.

In her court documents, Ang’awa through lawyer Nelson Havi says the legal framework necessary for the change of the system and structure of education from 8-4-4 or the adoption of the CBC curriculum recommended to Education CS George Magoha and Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development by the National Assembly has not been put in place to date.

The parent also faults KICD for failing to demonstrate that it initiated and conducted research to inform the approval to the national government of the CBC curriculum.

“The entire process of conception, introduction, and implementation of the CBC curriculum in basic education is undertaken in an opaque manner, without observing the law and participation of the people,” says Havi.

Ang’awa wants the court to suspend further steps towards implementation of the basic education curriculum framework 2017 and the sessional paper on policy framework for reforming education and training for sustainable development in Kenya pending hearing of the petition filed in court.

The same was introduced through the basic education curriculum framework, 2017, and sessional paper No 1 of 2019 on policy framework for reforming education and training for sustainable development in Kenya.

She says the actions of Magoha and his team are unconstitutional and are prejudicial to the future of the children of Kenya and ought to be halted pending the determination of the questions raised in the petition.

“The effect of this overhaul and replacement of the system and structure of basic education is to designate a primary school as a secondary school without amendment to the Basic Education Act No 4 of 2013,” read the court documents.

Also sought is to have the petition transmitted to Chief Justice Martha Koome to empanel a bench to hear the matter.

The 8-4-4 system and structure of education was introduced in Kenya in January 1985 with basic education being offered in primary and secondary schools.

The curriculum used in the 8-4-4 system and structure of education has been changed and replaced over the years.

Those sued are CS responsible for matters relating to Basic Education, Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development, Kenya National Examination Council, Teachers Service Commission, Kenya National Union of Teachers, the National Assembly, Interior CS Fred Matiang’i, and Education CS George Magoha.


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