New curriculum promotes education, not schooling – Dr Jwan

Students sitting for KCSE exams
File image of students sitting national exams.

The Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) Director Dr Julius Ouma Jwan has lauded the move by the Ministry of Education to review the curriculum to make it competitive and interesting to learners.

Speaking in Mombasa on Monday during the start of the 12th Annual Conference for the Kenya Primary Schools Head Teachers’ Association (KEPSHA), Dr Jwan said reforms in the curriculum were long overdue and came in the opportune time.

He added that there is need for the education stakeholders to appreciate the changes being implemented in the curriculum as this will make Kenya’s education competitive globally.

“Emphasis that every student should pass exam so as to end up at the university is holding back the country’s education system,” said Dr Jwan.

In the new-look curriculum, students will attend primary school for six years, after which they will join junior school for another three years before joining senior school, where they will have a choice of selecting areas of specialization and still study core units including citizenship and identity, financial literacy, values and ethics.

According to Dr Jwan, the proposed curriculum will reduce work load and modify organization of learning. He also said that the new curriculum makes learners identify with the foundation of the nation as a democratic nation.

“This curriculum will reduce the load and seeks to modify organization of learning and make the learners identify with the democratic foundation of this nation something that the current curriculum does not address.”

The move for a curriculum reform is also advised by the East Africa Protocol(EAC) in which the governments agreed to harmonize curriculum and adopt competence based education to facilitate movement of students in regional learning institutions and enhance export of lab hour.

The pilot study is scheduled for next year.

On the other hand, the celebrated scholar differed with school ranking system, saying that the new system is competence-based promoting education instead of schooling.

“How do you rank a student learning under a tree with one studying under conducive environment? It’s not logical and that’s why we are creating a level playing ground for each student to achieve a wholesome development,” He said.

He termed as misconceived perception the school of thought postulating for students ranking on basis that it is a motivating factor.

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