Decline in Government Funding and the Quality of Instructional Progrmmes in Public Universities in Kenya
Sifuna, D. N.
Kamere, Isabella M.
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This article argues that since the achievement of independence in Kenya, higher education was free with public expenditure covering tuition and students' living allowances, development costs, instruction and research needs. This was on the basis that such state subsidies of higher education would among other things, enhance the country's desire to create highly trained personnel which could replace colonial administrators as well as ensuring some equity of access. However, since the economic crisis of the early seventies experienced by many of the African countries, universities started facing serious problems of funding both from the donor agencies and their governments. The study essablished that the continued decline in funding led many universities to diversify their sources of funds which have included, the students' loan scheme and privatization of teaching programmes, it has adversely impacted on the quality of instructional programmes with shortages of highly qualified persoanel, due to the abolition of staff development training, increase in the number of private Universities and private students in public universities, challenges of the Commission for Higher Education in sustaining quality assurance, and limited access to teaching support materials and equipment as well as infrastructure. It is recommended that as the ovemment was instrumental in the expansion public universities, it needs to substantially increase its funding to the institutions as they also embark on promoting and enhancing partnerships with the private sector which is a common practice among Western universities. Key words: Kenya, Funding Higher Education, Public Universities, Quality Assurance