Education in Kenya: Making a Difference
In Kenya, there are two stages in general education:
- The Kenyan Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE). Primary education in Kenya is free. Our work at Innis Education Centre began with teacher exchanges, sharing methods and practice and providing a meal for the youngest children at the school in order to regularise attendance through better nutrition and health. Subsequent work has further improved attendance (latrines and sanitary pad schemes for girls) and achievement (our library project). As a result of the library project we've seen an increase in achievement that has seen this rural school move up the district league tables and led to more children offered places at good national schools. Some of these children have benefited from our secondary education bursary scheme.
- The Kenyan Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE). Secondary school education is free at some schools but not at national schools. Even where it is 'free' students must pay for things like meals, uniform and books. Girls often miss school once a month as they cant afford sanitary protection. Many students fail to gain their KCSE certificate and they are in arrears with 'fees'. Our work at Miriu, a 'free' school, began with a programme of support that enabled students of very limited means - total or partial orphans - to maintain regular attendance at school by paying a portion of the 'fees' needed to attend. A KCSE certificate equals employment - without it, students struggle to find work.
Making a Difference means that Queenter (far right) and Victor (second right) can go to University or into employment and children at Innis (left) don't have to share books between many in class and they have the opportunity to take books home to read and study.