President Ruto Sends a Stern Warning to Headteachers Charging Illegal Levies
President Ruto Sends a Stern Warning to Headteachers Charging Illegal Levies. President William Ruto has issued a stark warning to school administrators imposing illegal fees on parents and ordered the Ministry of Education to oversee the use of the Sh67 billion capitation fund recently disbursed to schools by the national government. The President highlighted that the government has released Sh67 billion along with another Sh10 billion for NG-CDF as scholarships and bursaries for disadvantaged students.
Addressing the issue, President Ruto emphasized the government’s commitment to ensuring Kenyan children stay in school. He considered it an offense for a school principal to send students home because of fees and argued that their education was already being taken care of by the government. The president warned school principals who introduced surcharges and assured them that the law would catch up with them.
Some of the disputed charges mentioned include incentive, remedial, lunch and expenses for purchasing full papers. Even seventh-graders face new fees imposed by elementary school principals, such as locker requirements, lunches and registration fees.
Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu had earlier issued directives to implement specific measures for Year 7 and Year 8 pupils. These included allowing candidates from the 2023 Kenya Primary Education Assessment to join Grade 7 in junior secondary schools hosted by their respective primary schools and to use classrooms previously used by Grade 8 students in 2023.
Dr. Ruto has expressed concern over the increasing demand for money by school administrators, which is diverting attention from the education of pupils. He confirmed the government’s stand against rogue teachers engaging in such practices.
During an interdenominational prayer service at Machakusi Primary School in Teso South, Busia District, Dr. Ruto announced the employment of 56,000 new teachers to address the shortage of staff in schools. In addition, Parliament was expected to discuss hiring an additional 22,000 teachers. The president also mentioned plans to send 2,000 Tvet lecturers to technical colleges next month to accommodate the growing number of students transferring from primary and secondary schools.
Dr. Ruto accused the opposition of misleading Kenyans about key government policies, citing the recent court approval of the Social Health Insurance Fund (SHIF). He defended the scheme saying it would provide affordable health care, while opponents argued that most of the funds raised would go towards administrative expenses.
During his visit to Busia District, Dr. Ruto in Malakisi a Sh650 million water project and allocated Sh200 million for water pipelines as part of the last mile initiative for Teso North, Teso South and Bungoma. He pledged another Sh4 billion to expand the Lower Nzoia Rice Project in Bunyale. Among others, the President was accompanied by CS Prime Minister Musalia Mudavadi, National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetang’ula, Sports CS Ababu Namwamba, Governor Paul Otuoma.