Education CS Prof George Magoha at a past event. The Education Ministry has said 'Nemis is here to stay.'

SPEECH BY PROF. GEORGE MAGOHA, CBS, CABINET SECRETARY, MINISTRY OF EDUCATION, DURING THE 2019 COUNTY DIALOGUES TOWARDS QUALITY COMPETENCY-BASED EDUCATION ON JULY 15, 2019 AT NAKURU HIGH SCHOOL, NAKURU

CEO, Kenya National of Examination Council

Senior Government Officials

Representatives of Development Partners

Distinguished Guests

Ladies and Gentlemen

It gives me great pleasure to preside over this launch of the County Dialogues on Quality Competency-Based Education in Kenya. I take this opportunity to express my heartfelt gratitude to all those who have supported this important exercise.

In May, when I launched the Curriculum Policy, one of the fundamental documents anchoring the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC), I promised that we will mount a “National Conversation on the Quality of Education We Want. Todays simultaneous launch in eight regions of the country, is another remarkable milestone that is testimony to the fact that the Government is determined to involve every Kenyan in the

curriculum reform process. I hereby restate the Ministrys determination to ensure that views of all stakeholders are taken on board to guarantee a curriculum that reflects the wishes and aspirations of all Kenyans. It is indeed why we are running this County Dialogues on the rallying call captured under the social media hashtag of #YourViewsMatter.

By so doing, the Ministry assures all Kenyans that the implementation of CBC will progress with a seamless precision to ensure our learners get a world class education.

The launch of the County Dialogues today marks another phase of our stakeholder engagement process. Over the last four months, we have held consultations with at least 40 key stakeholders. Only two weeks ago, the Ministry held fruitful engagements with Members of Parliament and the Senate who represent the countrys electorates. The elected leaders gave us incredible feedback on CBC which we are factoring into our implementation process. We have also met with clergy, officials of the National Parents Association, Kenya Secondary School Heads Association, Kenya Primary School Heads Association, Civil Society, Development Partners, among others. We will keep meeting with more stakeholders as we roll out education reforms.

Currently, the Sessional Paper No. 1 of 2019 is pending before Parliament. We hope legislators will give the vital document adequate attention. Once passed, the Sessional Paper, coupled with the Curriculum Policy, will further enhance the legal and policy frameworks upon which the CBC will be anchored.

In the past four months, officials of the Ministry led by myself, have

visited schools in nearly all regions of the country. Based on the visits, I can confirm that the CBC is working. The textbooks supplied to schools have reached the institutions, and our teachers and learners are enjoying the materials supplied. I wish to urge Kenyans to ignore any form of false data that create the impression that teaching and learning materials arent adequate in schools.

I also wish to assure the country that the TSC has trained close to 100,000 teachers on the CBC delivery. So far, we have received reports that these teachers are doing a commendable job in attending to our children.

The ongoing County Dialogues will culminate in a National Education Conference on Curriculum Reforms to be held on August 16, 2019. The conference will enable the sharing of all the county-specific issues raised from counties, collate relevant monitoring reports and ensure the country discusses critical lessons learnt on the CBC. The National Conference will form the basis of a Roadmap for CBC Rollout in Grade Four in 2020. Before this conference, the Ministry has lined up sector-specific preconference that will generate position resolutions to be shared at the conference.

To provide the context for the county conversations that we are launching today, the Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC) is releasing findings of the three assessment studies.

We realize that, in order to ensure provision of quality education, there is need to regularly collect empirical data on the learning outcomes, as well as on the predictors of learner achievement. This is provided for in

Kenyas legal frameworks guiding provision of quality education, such as the Basic Education Act, 2013.

To this end, the government institutionalized the National Assessment System for Monitoring Learner Achievement (NASMLA) Framework in 2006 and established the National Assessment Centre at the Kenya National Examinations Council to conduct Monitoring Learner Achievement studies at Basic Education level.

I note with great pleasure that KNEC has completed five Monitoring Learner Achievement Studies, with the support of the PRIEDE Project over the last 12 months. These studies have profiled learner characteristics in terms of knowledge, skills, attitudes and competencies, as well as factors that impinge upon acquisition of these skills among Grade 2, 3,7 and Form 2 learners.

The studies have revealed areas of concern such as low achievement levels, especially of 21st century skills such as critical thinking and analytical skills; pupil overage, pupil absenteeism; teacher centred pedagogical approaches, low integration of ICT in learning and predominant utilisation of commercially sourced tests in assessing learner progress.

The Ministry will continue ensuring that basic education is more inclusive, through provision of instructional materials and resources for learners with special needs and disabilities. We will also ensure regular school-based teacher support by the Directorate of Quality Assurance and Standards.

This years Education Quality Dialogues, accord the Ministry an opportunity to assess the status of implementation of the recommendations of the 2018 Education Quality Dialogues at county level, effectively disseminate the findings of the five studies and engage stakeholders in discussions on specific issues raised by the studies with a view to come up with national, regional and county-specific interventions towards improvement of learning outcomes as well as conditions of learning.

The Dialogues will therefore allow for stakeholder discussion on how best the CBC can be implemented in order to address gaps reported in the current 8-4-4 system of education.

I conclude by urging all Kenyans to turn up in large numbers in each of the counties to engage in fruitful discussions which will see the provision of the kind of education that produces a learner who is not just a receiver of knowledge but rather a creator of that knowledge.

I now wish to declare this Quality Dialogue officially launched.

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