All govt-sponsored students to enroll in boarding schools, Mogoha says

Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha has announced that the government will admit all beneficiaries of the government-sponsored Elimu scholarship program to boarding schools.

Magoha who visited some of the beneficiaries at the Bangladesh slum in Mombasa said no beneficiary will be allowed to study in a day school and those that have admission letters for day schools will be readmitted to a full-time boarding school.

He made the remarks when he toured the Bangladesh slum yesterday to identify the needy but top 2020 KCPE achievers who will benefit from the Equity Elimu scholarship program.

“We are going to ensure that all the children who land this scholarship will go to boarding schools where everything is catered for including uniform and transport,” he added saying the program is transformative and will be done transparently.

The Elimu scholarship program is a Kenyan government-run education scholarship funded by the World Bank through the Ministry of Education and the equity group foundation targeting 9,000 vulnerable pupils.

“I have found one paradigm which must be shifted right now, that once the child has won this scholarship, the onus now lies with the government to place that child in a suitable boarding school, the reason being the government already pays everything for the day sec school with a rate of capitation of sh 22,240 per child,” said Magoha.

The scholarship according to Education CS George Magoha seeks to improve secondary education in Kenya. And it takes care of school fees, transport and learning materials. Magoha said the government is contemplating increasing the number of beneficiaries in future to meet the demand.

“I am going to persuade the president to authorize that to have another 18,000 learners, 9,000 for next year and 9,000 for the following year so that we have a whole four years of Elimu scholarship cohorts which will then be helping 36,000 learners,” he added. Magoha visited a number of informal settlements, including Bangladesh, where he met the prospective beneficiaries of the programme.

The CS stated the process of awarding the scholarship would be transparent to ensure that the most deserving scholars are the ones who benefit.

“I want to assure you that Equity bank has used a formula that is incorruptible. They looked at the areas’ original population, the number of applicants before getting a large cohort of children…anyone cheating (by shortchanging the beneficiaries) shall be caught” the CS told journalists.

Sixty-two bright pupils from poor backgrounds, who sat their Kenya Certificate of Primary Examination (KCPE) in Bangladesh slums, have been awarded scholarships to pursue secondary education, through the Elimu scholarship program.

In Mombasa, Equity had identified more than 350 needy students who were subjected to interviews. Only 62 succeeded in securing the scholarship. The Elimu program will fund the secondary education for children that surpassed 280 marks in their 2020 KCPE exams.

The Cabinet Secretary said he has embarked on the search of more partners including Banks, Safaricom to support the program rolled country-wide by the government. He challenged those who missed in the program to seek help from the Constituency development fund.


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