Universalizing Primary Education in Kenya : Is It Beneficial and Sustainable?
Sifuna, Daniel N.
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Kenya has targeted universal primary education since its independence. In achieving such a goal the country introduced free primary education in 2003 and enrolments dramatically increased. However, in terms of quality, the education provided is not satisfactory. This paper examines the challenges in financing the implementation of free primary education and verifies the actual learning conditions at the school level with particular reference to the transition from primary to secondary education. The government tends to focus on the quantitative expansion of education, paying less attention to value, significance and effects of education for individuals. Furthermore, the significance of universalizing primary education is discussed from the viewpoint of people in the rural community. It is important to take interest not only in the “quantitative expansion of education for the nation" but also the “qualitative growth of individuals for the community." Such emphasis may further enhance the benefits of schooling and encourage sustainable educational development.