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Raila Odinga’s advice to the Ministry of Education as Covid-19 cases increase

ODM party leader Raila Odinga has advised the government to take more time and not rush to reopen schools regardless of the pressure.

Speaking in a show at a local radio station earlier today, Raila noted that the Ministry of Education should take measures before allowing learners back to school.

The former Prime Minister reminded the state that the health of the learners should be a priority, adding that the date of the national examinations could always be postponed to a later date.

The opposition leader said it is better to waste the whole year protecting our children than to rush them back to school and lose them to the deadly virus maintaining that examinations are nothing compared to the lives of Kenyans.

Raila also said that the ongoing e-learning programs should not be included in the exams as some students are not able to access the online lessons.

The Education Ministry CS Prof George Magoha had initially hinted at schools reopening in June if the Covid-19 pandemic will be under control by then.

The Ministry formed a Covid-19 Education Response Committee chaired by Dr. Sara Ruto to monitor the trend of the situation.

Kenya Primary Schools Heads Association (Kepsha) Chairperson Nicholas Gathemia also asked the Committee to take time before coming to the decision of resuming school.

Mr. Gathemia, who had appeared before the Committee last week, also asked that the examinations be moved to a later date.

The Kepsha Chairman was presenting his submissions to the Committee on behalf of headteachers across the country.

Gathemia said that reopening schools before the virus spread is contained would violate the social distancing directive, therefore exposing learners to a risk of infection.

Gathemia cited Nairobi County public schools, which have fully packed classrooms with the number of students ranging from 70 to 110 per class.

Kenya’s infection number currently stands at 1, 286, with the number expected to rise, especially in the months of August and September.

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