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UNHCR lauds government’s efforts in supporting refugee education

The United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) has commended the Government of Kenya for its continued support in the education of refugees in the country.

Speaking in Kakuma Refugee Camp, UNHCR Associate Education Officer Mr Ali Duale said the UN agency for refugees recognises the government’s efforts through the Ministry of Education in ensuring refugee children get the right to education same as their Kenyan counterparts.

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UNHCR is aware of the support the refugee community is getting from the government of Kenya to implement the Kenyan curriculum and take professional examinations including both primary and secondary education.

The agency was grateful to the government of Kenya for allowing the refugee children to go through the Kenyan education system and sit for national examinations.

“We work very closely with the Ministry of Education to ensure programs in the schools are implemented as per the requirements of the Government in terms of quality assurance,” said Mr Duale

The UNHCR education officer noted that Government Scholarships, results-based school grants, and school meals programs have motivated children.

He underscored that the Elimu Scholarships were a great motivation for learners in the last Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) where over 60 percent of the children in Kakuma and Kalobeyei refugee camps scored above average.

Duale, whose duties include coordinating education programs in the refugee camps, affirmed that UNHCR and its partners implement the Kenyan education curriculum in its 55 schools with an enrollment of over 98,000 children where 40 percent are girls.

The Schools are managed and financed by UNHCR together with its partners with a majority of refugee children and just like any other Kenyan child they sit the Kenya national examinations and get certification after every level of learning.

Duale noted that schools in the camps are characterised by huge congestion and they are inadequately resourced which affects the quality of learning in the camps.

He observed that UNHCR implements government policies and regulations to ensure every child gets quality education.

There is high demand for education at the camps and many children enroll which has led to an increased number of children attending school in recent years.

To ensure integration, many refugee children attend government schools around the refugee area the same way as Kenyan children who attend refugee camp-based schools.

We have host community children who attend refugee camp schools since they are the closest schools they have.

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