Addresses by George Saitoti
1. Addresses by George Saitoti after 1983.
- Major Issues in Implementing District Focus (1985).
- A View from Africa (1986).
- Inter-African Conference on Adolescent Health (1992).
- Statement of Kenya (1994).
- Speech on the occasion of the World Population Day celebrations on 11 July 1997.
- Key note address. Strengthening mathematics and computer science and research in Kenyan universities (2000).
- The challenges of economic and institutional reforms in Africa (2002).
- Education Sector Review: How far have we come since independence and what still needs to be done to meet the Education needs of all Kenyans (2003).
- Reflections on African development (2003).
- Education Sector Review: How Far Have We Come And What Still Needs To Be Done To Meet the Education Needs of All Kenyans (2003).
- Ministerial Statement on Free Primary Education (2003).
- Education in Kenya: Challenges and policy responses, Paper Prepared for Presentation at the Council on Foreign Relations Washington DC (2004).
- Education in Kenya: Challenges and policy responses (2004).
- Ministry's plan to boost mathematics and sciences (2004).
- Bias keeps girls away from sciences (2005).
- Statement by Hon G Saitoti delivered to the 34th UNESCO General Conference (2007).
- Provision of Education in Kenya: Challenges and policy responses (2005).
- Keynote address given during the official opening of the sub-regional seminar for TIVET policy makers and UNESCOUNEVOC Center Coordinators (2005).
- Shillings three billion spent on free learning so far (2007).
- Education in Kenya: Challenges and Responses, Presentation at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington D.C. (2013).
2. Abstracts and Introductions.
Prof George Saitoti
Minister for Education, Science and Technology,
Government of Kenya
This presentation is organized as follows:
(a) A brief overview of Kenya and challenges that the country is faced with;
(b) A broad overview of Kenya's education system and the challenges facing the sector;
(c) Policy responses with an emphasis on the implementation of free primary education; and
(d) Concluding remarks
- Kenya Basic Facts and Indicators
- Population 32 million with 57% between ages 0-19 years - meaning high dependency rates;
- Economic performance-strong during 1960s and early 1970s; slowed in 1980s and 1990s;
- The poor performance of the economy attributed to a combination of factors including drought, poor donor relations, ethnic conflict associated with transition to multiparty democracy, advent of HIV/AIDS, weak institutions and governance;
- Economy largely dependent on rain-fed agriculture, but increasingly diversifying into services and horticulture
- Government spending is about 22% of GDP, education takes largest share of government spending.
- Sectors' Share in public expenditure
- Education takes one of the largest share of resources allocated to a single function.
- The figure below provides details of the share of public expenditure by sector for 2002/2003 financial year.
- At about 20%, education sector is one of the priority sectors in government expenditure.
- Kenya: Key Challenges
- Poverty - 57% of the population live in poverty
- HIV/AIDS - prevalence- 9.4%
- Malaria - costly and reduces productivity
- income distribution - inequality very high
- Limited access to development goods-health, education, clean water, etc.
- Poor infrastructure (hence cost of doing business), crime
- Entrenching democracy, constitutional reform.
- Structure of Kenya's Education System
The education and training sector contains:
- Early Childhood Development and Pre-school Education
- Primary Education
- Secondary Education
- University Education
- Technical and Vocational Education and Training
- Teacher Education and Training
- Non-formal Education and Adult Education
- Special Education
- Primary Education
- Is first phase of formal education system.
- The start age is 6 years and runs for 8 years.
- Promotes growth, imparts literacy and numeracy skills.
- Lays a firm foundation for further formal education and training and life-long learning.
Challenges in primary education
- Declining enrolments in primary school (before 2003)
- Low access, retention and completion rates
- Distance and poor facilities
- Low private returns to primary education
- Primary school completion rates was 43.2% in 1990 with a slight increase over the years to 56.4% in 2003.
- The proportion of girls not completing their primary education is higher than that of boys - in 2003 Boys 60.3% as compared to 53.2% girls.
- Wide regional and gender disparities in participation in education especially at the primary school level.
- The figure below illustrates the evolution of regional disparities in primary school enrolment over the period 1995-2003
- Secondary Education
- Secondary education caters for primary school leavers in the 14-17 years age group.
- There are about 3,500 public and 500 private secondary schools
- The net enrolment is about 22% of the eligible age group.
Enrolment and Completion rates
- The enrolment rates for both males (24.0%) and females are very low (21.4%).
- There are wide disparities across administrative regions of the country .
- About 79% of students joining secondary school complete their secondary education.
Transition from primary to secondary education
- Transition rate from primary to secondary schools is low, with only less than 50% of primary school graduates entering secondary school.
- The low transition rates are due to several factors:
- Low quality of some of the existing secondary schools,
- High cost of secondary education,
- Lack of perceived incentives to continue education.
Challenges in secondary education
- High drop out rates (21% do not complete)
- poor performance
-limited spaces in secondary schools
- cost of secondary education
- rigidity of academic programs
- poverty and impact of HIV/AIDS
- student/teacher ratio high
- textbooks and other complements inadequate
equipment-especially science laboratories inadequate
- regional and gender disparities
- limited opportunities for handicapped population
- University Education
- 6 public universities
- 17 private universities.
- Undergraduate education takes a minimum of 4 academic years.
- Enrolment is about 63,000 students.
- Annual intake into public universities is about 10,000 and Private universities , 6,000.
- University education in public universities in Kenya is mainly financed by the government.
- The government (through the Higher Education Loans Board) provides loans to needy students.
Challenges in university education
- Limited physical facilities leading to low access and participation rates (10%)
- Poorly equipped (Lecture theatres, laboratories, workshops etc.)
- Cost - unaffordable to majority of Kenyans
- Mismatch of training programmes with the labour market.
- Tertiary Education
- Tertiary education covers, Technical training Institutes, Institutes of Technology and National Polytechnics.
- Other middle level colleges including Youth polytechnics.
- They form Technical Vocational and Education Training (TVET)
Challenges in Tertiary Education
- Under utilization of the capacity of TVET institutions and the non-relevance of some of their training programmes
- Poor management and governance of TVET institutions.
- Lack of enough trained teachers/instructors
- Lack of facilities/equipment.
JOC/EFR May 2019
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