Baringo nursery kids learn in ‘modern’ classes with stones as seats and others outside under trees.

ECDE pupils learn under a tree at Katuwit Primary School in Tiaty sub-county, Baringo county, January 19, 2017. PHOTO|THE STAR

There are more than 40,000 children in the Baringo ECDE programme but they learn under poor conditions for lack of classrooms and desks.

A spot check by the Star on Thursday found some inside classrooms but seated on stones and others outside under trees.

Riongo Primary School head teacher Collins Kesses said the children were congested in one “modern classroom” that the county constructed in 2014.

“The major problem is still lack of desks so they are forced to arrange stones to sit on,” Kesses said.

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At Kadokoi and Katuit primary schools in Tiaty sub-county, head teachers said these circumstances have forced many pupils to drop out.

“We had about 100 children in 2015 but due to poor conditions and the cutting of the school feeding programme, a number of them quit. We now have about 30 kids,” Kadokoi head teacher Dorcas Yatich said.

She added that the mud-floor classroom was poorly constructed by the county in 2014, posing health risks, and that they were yet to receive the chairs and tables that were donated.

ECDE pupils learn while seated on stones, inside a classroom constructed by the Baringo county government, at Katuwit Primary School in Tiaty sub-county. PHOTO|THE STAR

The county has a total of 1,049 centres for Early Childhood Development Education and at least 46,446 learners, many of them forced to study under trees or while seated on stones in classes. The worst hit sub-counties are Baringo North, Mogotio, Baringo South and Tiaty.

County education executive Thomas ole Lonongo’nop admitted a snail’s pace in the improvement of the centres and noted lack of enough money.

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“Sh10 million was allocated in 2016-17 financial year and another Sh5 million in 2018-19 for the purchase of furniture for both the learners and teachers” Lonongo’nop said

He added that the Sh15 million in the latest budget only benefited 3,980 of the 46,446 learners.

The executive reported, however, that Baringo constructed 600 ECDE classrooms and was in the process of equipping them with learning materials, books, chairs and tables, “although progressively, due to insufficient funds”.

Via The Star.

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