The Catholic Church has challenged the Ministry of Education in Kenya to craft a Bill and lobby the National Assembly & Senate to generate relevant legislation that will regulate school fees and limit levies in public schools instead of issuing circulars.
In a Press Statement expressing the Church’s deep concern about high school fees being charged in public secondary schools in the country, Bishop Maurice Crowley warns that if left unregulated school fees may lead to some students being locked out from high school.
“While we appreciate the Government’s directive dispatch officials to secondary schools across the country to check on alleged violation of fees guidelines, we feel that there is no need to do more, including bringing on board other stakeholders in education to carry out the current monitoring exercise in schools” Bishop Crowley
The Statement released on 4th February 2015 reminds the Government of its obligation to safeguard children’s right to education and the responsibility to ensure the issued guidelines on school fees are enforced.
Maurice Crowley, Vice Chairman of the Commission for education & Religious Education at the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB), called on the Government to ensure that the constituency bursary funds are made available to all schools across the country adding that the fund should only be availed to poor and vulnerable children.
He highlighted the need for Boards of Management & Parents Teachers Associations in schools to develop paying plan with parents/guardians who have difficulties paying school fees and take responsibility in ensuring that approved fees are paid on time.
He invited the Government to move with speed and address the continued levying of extra charges in public schools to cushion parent who are already grappling with financial challenges occasioned by the prevailing high cost of living.