Early pregnancy and early marriage worsens poverty conditions of families and girls, instead of reducing it, Machakos County Director for Education, Mrs. Shamsa Adan Mohammed has said.
She said access to education was the surest way to breaking the vicious cycle of poverty that teenage pregnancy and early marriages sustained in families.
She girls should take advantage of the Free Primary and Day Secondary Education programme the government provided to break the chains of poverty by completing primary and secondary education.
She made the remarks at Makivenzi ABC Girls Secondary schools during a Joint Mission to assess the preparedness of the Counties in implementing Secondary Education Quality Improvement Project (SEQIP) in 110 sub counties are the most disadvantaged sub counties in 30 counties.
The team was led by the National Coordinator of the Project, Ms Jane Mbugua, and World Bank Task Team Leader, Ms Huma Ali Waheed. The team visited eight schools in Murang’a and Machakos Counties, which is among 30 Counties to benefit from the project.
The Project worthy Shs.20 billion, and funded by the World Bank, aims at improving student learning and transition from Primary to Secondary education in 110 sub counties that the most disadvantaged areas in 30 counties.
The Project targets 7,852 Primary Schools and 2,147 secondary schools in 110 Sub counties in the 30 Counties.
Under the project, Class 7 and 8 and forms 1-4 in targeted schools have already received textbooks in Mathematics, English and Science subjects, thereby achieving a student-textbook ratio of 1:1.
Under the project, Kenya Institute for Curriculum Development (KICD) has received technical support in developing Competence based curriculum grade 4, 5and 6.
Schools in the target regions have been selected schools and are set to benefit from infrastructure support which includes classrooms, science laboratories, library, toilets, water facilities and electricity.
Embedded in the project, is a scholarship programme to enable vulnerable students to complete secondary schools.
The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has recruited 600 teachers to serve the targeted region in the last financial year, to address teacher shortage in the area. Kenya National Examinations Council has been able, under the auspices of the Project, to strengthen national examinations and assessments systems.
The strengthening of the national examinations and assessments systems follows adoption of the Competence based curriculum. KNEC will now examine and assess the effectiveness of the teaching and learning of the repertoire of skills that learners are expected to learn and internalise.
The project aims at, among others, addressing barriers to access to inclusive quality education in the region, as part of the strategy to meeting the Sustainable Development Goals.