Schools reopen: Dilemma of expectant candidate

Education CS George Magoha

While other candidates across the country rejoice about the reopening of schools after staying home for six months following the Covid-19 pandemic, things are not the same for Regina Nakutaka, a form four student at St. Columbans Kitale. She is not aware whether to rejoice or be sad after Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha announced that candidate classes to be reopened on Monday 12 October.

"I'm happy that after quite a long time and break we are again going back to classes. This is good news and was hoping I will be back to class too. Sadly it cannot be the same," Nakutaka regrets.

The candidate, who is expecting to deliver a child mid this month, is among the many affected by early or teenage pregnancies as reported during the coronavirus pandemic in the country.

With candidates expected to report back on monday, many parents with expectant girls are at a dilemma of whether their daughters will be allowed back to class or after delivery. This is not only their worry but also their performance in the examinations scheduled next year March.

"Many principals in the country are very reluctant to accept girls who are pregnant and locking her out of class will definitely have an impact on her results. She might not be able to attend the rest of the classes. Its either she repeats the class," said the mother.

Grade four, class 8 and form four students are expected in class on Monday while the rest await the reopening dates to be communicated.

However, according to CS Magoha, social distancing will be a challenge to achieve but it should not be used as a setback to keep children at home.

He has constantly urged parents to learn how to live with the virus because it's not clear when the society will be free of the virus.

Earlier information from the ministry on school reopening was a temporary relief for Nakutaka, who would have at least few months to breastfeed till January 2021, but the stance on abrupt reopening on Monday has left her to wonder in thoughts.

See also: Do not use national exams as money minting business, KUPPET tells KNEC

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