Private education institutions are up in arms against the recommendations developed during the just concluded education sector review that could affect the way they operate. At least 20 recommendations were adopted during the education sector review meeting held in Kampala.
The Education and Sports Ministry Permanent Secretary, Alex Kakooza told journalists shortly after the review that they would implement some of the recommendations during remaining part of the 2017/2018 academic year and the following year.
The recommendations include others compelling each private school to establish a functional board of governors, regulating the increment of tuition, scrapping primary one entry interviews, stopping the issuing homework and examining children in pre-primary, regulating the establishment and distribution of private schools and institutions and the development of an assessment model for physical education.
The recommendations have drawn protests from some private schools, arguing that they may affect their operations. The head teacher of Lake Side College Luzira, Samuel Kyewalyanga, says regulating the increment of tuition may hinder their operations, since schools have different needs.
The head teacher of Hormisdallen Primary School in Kamwokya, Cephus Kamya, equated the proposed scrapping of primary one entry interviews to treating a patient with a fever without diagnosing the cause of the fever.
“Primary one interviews are a way for us to gauge a child’s ability to read, write or express themselves. This assessment helps us determine how to handle each child. Without interviews, we would teach these children blindly without knowing their strengths and weaknesses,” he said.
However, another teacher said some of the recommendation may never see the light of the day. “The ministry makes recommendations but we never see them being put into action. How will they make sure that all schools have Physical Education teachers and facilities yet every other day land belonging to some schools is being sold and they do nothing?” he asked.
But some teachers have welcomed the recommendations. inifred Nakanjako, a teacher at Marto Nursery school, says that the ministry is right to stop the issuance of homework in nursery schools, saying it retards a child’s mind.
Records from the Education Ministry show that there are 29,636 registered education facilities from pre-primary to tertiary education in the country. More than 10,000 of the 29,636 institutions are privately owned.