School heads warned against increasing school fees as they re-open for 3rd term
The Ministry of Education and Sports has directed that Schools must not increase school fees under the circumstances, as they get ready to re-open for third term of the academic year 2020.
In a statement released on Thursday February 18th 2021, Patrick Muinda the Assistant Commissioner Communications and Information Management at Ministry of Education and Sports says School Management Committees and Boards of governors are advised to review their budgets to address the concerns raised by parents on the issue of fees based on the length of the term that the learners will be in school.
“Students in different classes will be in school for different lengths of time in accordance with the school calendar issued by the Ministry. The Permanent Secretary will sanction changes in school dues on a case by case basis under unique circumstances on the advice of the Directors and Commissioners” he noted.
Meanwhile, the Ministry says it has learnt many lessons from the experience and subsequent inspection of Education Institutions while candidate classes studied during their 2nd term.
The plan for the next intake is to strengthen surveillance mechanisms by increasing and monitoring the reporting lines and protocols. These protocols will be strictly followed so as to ensure safety of all learners in school. In case of COVID Cases reported in a school.
On the issue of Nursery schools, Muinda says the of Education and Sports is in the final stages of concluding the Early Childhood Development (ECD) policy that will outline best practices and procedures for providing ECD services in the country.
He clarifies that ECD centres (Nursery Schools) have not been closed permanently as has been purported in the press.
“The Health Scientists have advised the Ministry to delay the re-opening of ECD centres/Nursery schools primarily because Children/toddlers, (whose immunity is still low are super spreaders of the COVID 19 virus. It is feared that a child contracting the COVID 19 virus may carry the virus with a very high viral load thereby putting their teachers at great risk” Muinda explains.
He added that it is therefore envisaged that the time for re-opening of ECD Centres is dependent on how soon teachers in these Nursery schools will be vaccinated.
As schools prepare to re-open on 1st March 2021, the Ministry of Education and Sports has developed the draft Guidelines that must be aligned with the Health Guidelines and Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s) to be issued by Ministry of Health by Tuesday, 23″ February 2021. The Education Ministry’s Guidelines will be issued immediately thereafter.
President Yoweri Museveni closed down all teaching institutions on 18th March 2020 after the COVID-19 outbreak.