Facts about Kenya and Development Aid

Education in Kenya

Education Schooling System

The schools in Kenya rely on the so-called 8-4-4-school system, which divides into three semesters per year.

8 years primary school
4 years secondary school
4 years college

After eight years of studying in Primary School, each student has to undergo a standardized testing procedure (Kenyan Certificate of Primary Education, KCPE) to be signed up and qualified to go to Secondary School. This procedure constitutes children under enormous pressure because if their grading is not sufficient enough there is no chance to continue to go to higher-level schools. To be accepted for university one can be only obtained by allocation via ranking, which lists the graduates after graduation of the state examination at the Secondary School.


Situation of today

Public school fees have been disestablished in Kenya since 2013. There are a few exceptions in which some secondary schools are also 'free'. On first sight, that sounds like a fair educational chance, the opportunities to be educated has increased and still the majority of the population is living below 2 US dollars per day. Accumulated that is 60 US Dollars per month. School fees and uniforms plus shoes, which are mandatory, cost 32 US Dollars per schooling year. For most parents it’s not feasible to afford school because the monthly salary covers just enough to survive. The accumulation of costs that come with school supplies and food brings heavy burden to the families and ultimately this means that the children are forced to deny school and look for means of income.

Even if the parents could afford to send their children to school, another challenge would be the overcrowded classrooms. Through the ‘free’ education for all, the number of students increased immensely to an additional of 1.3M children. In many classrooms they’re are up to 100 children and more, plus the real need for teachers with good and standardized teaching skills. Many children are hungry which results in lack of concentration and so on.

Many parents are naturally forced towards the idea to let their children work, most of the times in the informal sectors. In the slums like Kibera the situation is much worse, there are only very view state owned schools and children have only a chance to education through private schools.

The private schools like Tenderfeet and also Bethlehem Community Center were build up and established on voluntary basis and hard work. The locals of the respective communities had the wish and will for transformation and bringing change for the children and their lives and education. The schools are both dependent on social funding and donations, most of the teachers are working for nothing and there are no school fees included.