Universities to reopen in January


Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha briefs media after attending a consultative meeting with stakeholders on the reopening of tertiary institutions at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) on July 30, 2020. PHOTO | FRANCIS NDERITU | NMG

The re-opening of universities and colleges has been pushed to January after the State established the institutions are not prepared to curb the spread of Covid-19 in September.

The Ministry of Education Thursday said resumption of learning has been postponed to January as a few institutions are prepared for the September re-opening. However, universities will continue offering virtual learning as well as examination and conducting graduations.

The ministry had in June told teacher training colleges (TTCs), universities and technical and vocational institutions (TVETs) to prepare for reopening in September, but saying basic education may not reopen due to the sharp rise in Covid-19 infection rate across the country.

“A survey of all teacher training colleges, universities and TVET institutions has shown that few of them have put in place necessary measures to comply with the Ministry of Health’s Covid-19 protocols that can guarantee safety of staff and learners once they reopen,” said Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha.

Online learning, graduation and examination, Prof Magoha said must be done in strict adherence to measures set by the Commission for University Education on the university standards and guidelines.

Priority in learning, he said should be given to final year students to ensure they can graduate. The Ministry, the CS noted will continue supporting online learning for university students by collaborating with the Higher Education Loans Board (Helb) to facilitate them acquire resources.

“Virtual orientation of first year students have been successfully undertaken in KCA University in May, 2020 and Dedan Kimathi University in June-July, 2020. This should be extended to other universities,” he said.

Plans by the state to support Helb to allow leaning acquire online learning materials comes at a time some 25,626 beneficiaries of the loans board have re-negotiated or stopped payments due to Covid-19 economic hardships.

that have hurt borrowers’ ability to repay.