The MoE is being pressed to increase funding for special schools.
Special needs education requires immediate attention in order to improve the quality of services provided to students with impairments. This concern was expressed during a recent Senate Committee on Education meeting with Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu.
Committee Chairman Joe Nyutu stressed the importance of the government reevaluating the financial assistance provided to special needs students. He noted that, despite inflation and a rising number of pupils with special needs, these funding have remained unchanged since 2018, posing major issues.
Murang’a Senator Nyutu also emphasized the alarming low teacher-to-student ratio in special needs schools, seeking immediate intervention.
Nominated Senator Peris Tobiko questioned why the cabinet had not approved a five-year-old proposal from the Ministry of Education to boost capitation money for special needs institutions.
Tana River Senator Danson Mungatana expressed worry about the government’s neglect of home-based special needs children and questioned whether the Special Needs Education budget allocation effectively addressed these individuals’ requirements.
Dr. Norman Kiogora, Director of the Kenya Institute of particular Education, underscored the significance of providing particular care for learners with disabilities, emphasizing that these children have distinct learning needs that must be met.
During the Kenya Music Festival State Concert in Nakuru, festival chairman Dr. Fred Ngala urged President William Ruto to enhance competition funding, specifically to include more students with special needs.
Kenya Union of Special Needs Education Teachers (KUSNET) Chairman Peter Sitienei expressed discontent with the current bargaining procedure and advocated for higher funding and compensation increases for teachers working in this field.
Sitienei also questioned the government’s concentration on day secondary schools and requested the Presidential Working Party (PWP) Report to be implemented to remedy the situation. The research recommends significant increases in capitation fees for various levels of education.
Ezekiel Machogu, Cabinet Secretary for Education, emphasized that students with special needs in institutions are being catered to, and that the government is gathering data to direct disbursement for their support.
Darius Mogaka, Director of Higher Education, stated that the taskforce report on education provided recommendations on capitation fees, which will be fully addressed once the taskforce’s recommendations are implemented.
President Ruto pledged the government’s commitment to including students with special needs in talent development initiatives, acknowledging the need for a unique learning environment to help them attain their full potential.
This widespread concern and call to action emphasizes the critical importance of tackling the issues that special needs education faces in Kenya.