Gov’t recalls Education heads from leave over dormitory fires


Gov't recalls Education heads from leave over dormitory fires
A school dormitory after an arson attack. PHOTO| COURTESY

In Summary

  • Dormitories in 10 secondary schools have been torched during the ongoing Second Term.
  • Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed directed that all Regional Coordinators of Education (RCEs) and County Directors of Education (CDEs) on leave to resume duties to help monitor the security situation in schols.
  • All school principals and their deputies have also been asked to reside in school quarters to ensure supervision of school programs and student behaviour.

The Ministry of Education has put secondary schools on high alert and recalled county education administrators from leave following a fresh wave of dormitory fires.

Noting that dormitories of 10 secondary schools had been torched during the ongoing Second Term, Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed directed that all Regional Coordinators of Education (RCEs) and County Directors of Education (CDEs) on leave to resume duties to help monitor the security situation in schools.

“The Ministry is concerned with the spate of fires in secondary schools that have destroyed dormitories of 10 schools during the Second Term. The Ministry is determined to preempt any further incidents to ensure students’ safety and prevent damage to property,” says the Ministry.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the Education CS also directed all school principals, their deputies and boarding masters/mistresses to reside in school quarters to ensure supervision of school programs and student behaviour.

The government also suspended all meetings that could keep school heads away from schools.

“All regional meetings, including those for the Annual Kenya Secondary School Heads Association for Counties, that take place during term dates are suspended forthwith to allow principals attend to students’ concerns at all times,” reads part of the notice

Boards of Management in all secondary schools were instructed to hold meetings within their respective schools over the next one week to assess the state of their institutions.

“The Boards of Management must submit reports of these meetings to the office of the Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Education not later than 5pm on May 31, 2018,” said the CS.

“Principals must compile briefs on their schools’ security and discipline situation and report to the respective County Quality Assurance and Standards officers.”

Education officials were directed to implement findings of the task force that had been appointed to probe school strikes in 2016.

The report, Special Investigation Team on School Unrest (2016), proposed among other things that school administrators should report students engaging in criminal activities and presence of drugs in schools to the police.

The report also recommended disciplinary action, including prosecution, of school heads who conceal, collude or abets criminal activities by students.

The most recent incident was reported in Mwea Boys High School and Lamu Boys Secondary School where several students arrested over arson attacks.

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Story By Benjamin Muriuki
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