Make classrooms project a success
It is the start of yet another mega project in the Ministry of Education worth billions of shillings.
The ministry has started the process of implementing the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) infrastructure expansion programme, which seeks to enhance smooth transition of learners.
Under the programme, the government has outlined the number of classrooms each county should have as part of the more than 10,000 needed to provide additional learning space for the first CBC cohort, who are to join Grade 7 or junior secondary in 2023.
The government is to spend Sh8 billion on the programme that will facilitate 100 per cent transition rate for learners from primary to junior secondary schools and counties are expected to complete construction of classrooms by April next year.
Specifications guiding the programme state that the cost of building a single classroom is pegged at about Sh788,000 with local contractors targeted to benefit and have since been encouraged to submit their bids.
The developments come as a very critical project because it is not only expected to accommodate all learners as they transit but also address the space challenge in public schools. It is for this reason that the ministry should by all means, make this project successful.
While implementing projects of this magnitude, there should be close supervision to avoid loss of public funds. There should be no room for unscrupulous business people to take advantage of this project to enrich themselves.
Already, we have seen loss of huge funds while implementing similar public projects and our hope is that this infrastructure expansion programme will not be part of the unfortunate statistics. It is reassuring that Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha has warned that funds availed for the project should not be misappropriated.
Magoha says the money will be paid directly to contractors electronically and any government official who will create unnecessary obstacles to the project will be dealt with.
Persons who will be involved must realise that this is a noble project aimed at benefitting our children and if CBC is to succeed, things must be done the right way and within stipulated timelines.
Therefore, there is no room for laxity and every stakeholder including the Ministry of Education officials and their Interior counterparts must work diligently to ensure our children get comfortable space and friendly environment to enjoy their learning.