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Financing Education in Kenya

Financing Education in Kenya

Kenya has adopted partnerships in delivering education by financing  education in Kenya. The partnership is between the Government, local communities, religious organisations, private investors and donors.

Financing Education in Kenya – Recurrent Government spending on financing education has been higher than any other social sector. According to the Economic Survey, it was 73.8 per cent of the total social sector expenditure. Though most of the funds go towards salaries and wages, the development expenditure for free primary education in Kenya and the free tuition secondary education in Kenya has increased.

Financing Education in Kenya – Government

The Government encourages more private sector participation in the provision and expansion by financing education in Kenya, especially at the secondary, TIVET and university levels. The potential role of NG0s, the private sector and religious organisations has to be exploited fully.

There are plans to encourage universities to reduce their dependence on Government, and to diversify their sources of income. Universities are also expected to reduce wastage and ensure efficient and cost-effective use of institutional resources. Plans are in the pipeline to develop a strategy on working with partners to mobilise additional resources to finance training and education  in Kenya.

Study results indicated that the patterns and trends of education financing in Kenya incorporated a partnership between the state, households, and communities long before the introduction of the cost-sharing policy. The financing of secondary education has, however, become problematic, as parents have to shoulder an increasingly large proportion of the cost.

Financing Education in Kenya

Financing Education in Kenya

Financing Education in Kenya – Secondary Education in Kenya

The government’s financing of secondary education has largely been directed towards recurrent expenditure, mainly to meet teachers’ salaries and allowances, at the expense of development expenditures, which would be essential to provide and improve the physical and instructional facilities. This has resulted in poor quality education as schools are inadequately provided with basic learning resources.

The cost-sharing strategy has had a negative impact on the poor and vulnerable households. The latter either do not enroll their children in secondary schools, or fail to sustain a continuous participation of those enrolled due to inability to meet cost requirements. This results in inadequate provision of learning facilities to the enrolled, poor quality education, and high dropout rates.

Financing Education in Kenya – Bursary Scheme

The operation of the Most bursary scheme is handicapped by inadequate guidelines with regard to the amounts to be allocated per student; poor criteria for selection of genuinely needy; inadequate awareness creation about the scheme’s existence and operations; limited funds hence limited coverage; poor co-ordination and delays in funds’ disbursement; and lack of monitoring mechanisms by the Most at the school and higher levels. This has resulted in lack of transparency and accountability, nepotism, among other aspects of mismanagement.

A critical issue that requires redress is awarding of the bursaries to less deserving, and sometimes completely undeserving, but well-connected applicants, at the expense of the poor and vulnerable groups.

Schools should work out ways to allow individual schools to evolve a ‘fees waiver mechanism and income generating activities at the school level to raise funds for
various purposes to benefit learning resources, quality improvement, school projects, and, where possible, supplement student fees requirements.

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Financing Education in Kenya

Kenya has adopted partnerships in its education system. The partnerships are between the Government, local communities, religious organisations, private investors and donors. However, recurrent Government spending on education has been higher than any other social sector. The economic survey 2012 indicates that the recurrent budget for the Ministry of Education rose to Kshs 149 billion in 2011/2 from 134.1 billion in 2010/11.

Although most of the money is spent on salaries and wages, development expenditure for free primary education and the free tuition secondary education has gone up. The Government encourages private sector participation in the provision and expansion of education at all levels. In 2011, the number of private primary schools rose to 8,719 from 8,430 in 2010.

There are plans to encourage public universities to reduce dependence on the Government and to diversify their sources of income. Universities are also expected to eliminate waste and ensure efficient and cost-effective use of resources. Plans are in the pipeline to develop a strategy on working with partners to mobilise additional resources to finance education and training at college level.

Some of the International Partners in Education

Some of the international partners in education in Kenya are:

Financing Education in Kenya – African Development Bank (ADB)

African Development Bank (ADB) supports staff development and provision of equipment to KESI and rehabilitates primary teacher training and technical college in Kenya.

Other assistance includes provision of science equipment and textbooks to secondary schools and procurement of vehicle for KESI.

Financing Education in Kenya – Danida

The Danish International Development Agency – Danida has given most of its support to special education for the disabled in Kenya. It was instrumental in the establishment of of the KESI and the development of the Education Assessment Resources Services Centres in the districts. It has supported training of special education teachers and other experts and provided equipment.

Financing Education in Kenya – DFID

The British Government’s Department for International Development – DfiD has supported primary, secondary, technical and higher education in Kenya in the form of physical facilities, provision of equipment and development of human resource development.

Financing Education in Kenya – JICA

Japan, through the Japanese International Cooperation Agency – JICA has been on the forefront of helping the education sector in Kenya, especially in technical education. JICA funded the establishment of Jomo Kenyatta College of Agriculture and Technology (it has since become a university). It has also supported the Strengthening of Mathematics and Science in Secondary Education (SMASSE) project and CEMASTEA.

Financing Education in Kenya – UNICEF

The United Nations Children’s Fund main interest is basic education and it has provided massive support for the Free Primary Education programme in Kenya. In the past, UNICEF supported pre-school education programmes, girls in primary school, participation and retention, non-formal education and education of children in difficult circumstances. Other areas of support include assessment of education outcomes at the primary level and HIV/Aids education.

Financing Education in Kenya – UNESCO

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation – UNESCO has supported Kenya in diversification and expansion of secondary and vocational education. Support has also been provided in improving school effectiveness, management and monitoring of achievement and outcomes at primary and secondary education levels. Higher education has also benefited from training of administration staff.

Financing Education in Kenya – World Bank

The World Bank has over the years given Kenya grants and loans to support education, Some of the key programmes supported include the Kenya Education Sector support Project whose objective is to improve basic education, Universities Investment Project and Early Childhood Development programme

Financing Education in Kenya – World Food Programme (WFP)

World Food Programme (WFP) provides food to most primary schools in ASAL areas and in the urban slums in Kenya. The WFP School Feeding Programme has been crucial in increasing access and retention in primary education.

Financing Education in Kenya – NGOs

For a long time, religious organisations in Kenya have been at the forefront in supporting education in Kenya. During the colonial days christian denominations partnered with the government and after independence set up their own schools.

Even after the Kenya Government took over of their schools, churches — Catholics Anglicans, Presbyterians, Seventh Day Adventists and Africa Inland — have continued to influence education.

Islamic schools, known as madrasa, are a main feature of Kenya’s basic education system, especially at the Coast and North Eastern provinces.

International and local NGOs have also been partners with the Government, local communities and religious organisation education.

Education NGOs

  • Action Aid Kenya
  • Africa Council for Adult and Continuing Education
  • African Children Educatin Fund
  • African Medical and Research Foundation
  • African Network for the Prevention and Protection Against Child Abuse and Neglect
  • CARE International in Kenya
  • Catholic Relief Services
  • Child Welfare Society of Kenya
  • Christian Children’s Fund
  • Forum for African Women Educationalists
  • Kenya Society for the Deaf Children
  • Kenya Society for the Mentally Handicapped
  • Kenya Society for the Blind
  • Kenya Society for the Physically Handicapped
  • Plan International
  • Save the Children
  • SOS Children’s Villages in Kenya
  • The Aga Khan Foundation
  • World Vision International

Financing Education in Kenya – Video


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