EMMANUEL MUTISYA NGUI
SCHOOL OF JOURNALISM, UNIVERSITY OF NAIROBI
SUPERVISOR: DR GEORGE GATHIGI
How has Kenyan education system contributed or failed in national development? What are the key issues in Kenyan education and what is their nexus to development?
Critical Pedagogy and Post-Modern Divide. Henry Giroux/2004
Basic Principles of Critical pedagogy. Alakbari and Farahi/2011
Education Reforms for Raising Economic Competitiveness. P Sahlberg/2006
Education reforms in Kenya for Innovation. Muricho and Chang’ach/2013
The approach toward education reforms in Kenya has been a gradual a process of transformational growth and change since independence. Recommendations made on the education reforms have not been implemented hence not served their intended role in growing Kenya’s economy as would be desired.
The 8-4-4system of education reform was done in 1985 and has served Kenyans through a time when research evidently shows changing needs of the Kenyan society.
The recent 3-6-3-3 system is believed to meet Kenyan’s growing needs especially in the key socioeconomic aspects of technology and innovation. This therefore half way responds to Kenyan’s long time quest of how to achieve an education system that is relevant to the modern society needs.
Muricho and Chang’ach/2013 introduce their perspective about the nature of the education system in Kenya as one that is focused on a capitalism rule other than individualistic country development at a local level. The guiding question on the inquiry of whether Kenya decides on its education model or not further introduces a debatable topic of who the educational role is meant to serve. Does it serve to solve the interests of the scholars acquiring the knowledge, or is it another driving force of capitalism to shape the thoughts of young African-Kenyan people?
Education reforms in Kenya are introduced in such a way that they may have a major determining influence on the success of those changes on individuals and to the development of the whole country at large, however, the reforms attempt has to be made to define some of the main key strategies for rapid changes experienced especially in the areas of technology and innovations.
Looking from time in history, during the colonial days Kenya adopted a form and structure of education that was based on racial ideology (Lidundu, 1996) which was merely a stratified system based on three races in Kenya at the time: Europeans, Asians and Africans. According to my assessment, Kenya’s type of education was segregative and could not unite the three races in Kenya.
Africans living then were given inferior education platforms that only saw them work and serve as slaves to the Whites. The only mode of learning was through observation and forceful acquisition of the Western culture In the name of civilization. Asians were given education for middle level work such as artisans, trades & vocation (Shiffield, 1990). Europeans had access to specialized education systems to equip them with leadership skills.
It’s also important to point out that the education system in Kenya is seen to take a theoretical approach with minimal opportunities to put acquired knowledge practice. There are fewer facilities or centers of employment to put acquired skills to practice thus questioning the developmental impact of education in the country.
Further, politicians have always had an extension of their legislative purpose in education which slows down the process of implementing education reforms thus directly or indirectly interfering with the facilitation of education reforms as a whole development process.
Chang’ach J.K.,“An Unfinished Agenda: Why is the Boy Child Endangered?” International Journal of AcademicResearch in Business and Social Scienc
Lidundu, K. S., (1996). “The Growth of University Education in Kenya: A Case of Moi University, 1984-1993” Unpublished M.phl Thesis,Moi University.
Shiffied, J. R., (1972). Education in Kenya: An Historical Study, New York: Teachers College Press.TSC,(2005). Teachers’ Image.Newsletter.