A new Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET) report has shown that most schools in the country are in poor conditions that could easily lead to tragedies.
According to the report, dubbed the State of Education in Kenya: An Audit of Infrastructure and Financing from a Safety Standards Perspective, school owners and management do not pay attention to the kind of structures put up in their schools and do not take safety measures when structures are in poor conditions.
It was also revealed that both learners and teachers are not aware of school safety precautions, which tells that in an event a disaster occurs in a school, measures to ensure safety and saving of lives will likely not be taken.
The survey was conducted in 21 counties and covered 213 schools, 153 of which were secondary schools, 46 primary schools, 12 special schools and one tertiary institution.
According to the report that was commissioned by KUPPET, there is need to clearly put in place safety guidelines in all schools, seeing that out of all the schools that were sampled, only about half of them had their teachers and students inducted on safety measures.
The ministry of education safety manual requires that schools set mechanisms and procedures that equip stakeholders with the knowledge on how to handle and prevent crises but as per the report, only 31 percent of the schools covered have active sub-committees on safety, and even then, not all of them hold the required frequent meetings.
Due to the findings, the report recommends that the Ministry of Education reviews policies and guidelines on safety and disaster management.
The report also recommends that teachers are trained in colleges on how to address safety issues, as those who are already working are equipped with adequate resources to ensure effective ways of taking safety precautions in schools.
The survey was prompted by the September Tragedy that saw eight pupils of Precious Talent Academy in Dagoretti lose lives after a classroom collapsed on them.