Three high court judges have refused to dismiss the case challenging the implementation of the competency-based curriculum (CBC), which has already reached Grade Six.
Judges Hedwiq Ong’udi, Antony Mrima, and Antony Ndung’u said the CBC complaint concerns topics of substantial public interest, allowing former Law Society of Kenya (LSK) president Nelson Havi to inherit the case.
According to them, the case will determine the well-being and destiny of a Kenyan youngster.
The petition, the court noted, calls into question the legitimacy of the CBC educational system, which the petitioner believes is burdensome to students and parents.
They held that “the claim poses substantial constitutional concerns that need be synthesised, stated, digested, and litigated before a judgement is made.”
The suits also highlight fundamental questions that go to the heart of the educational system, according to the justices.
Ms Esther Ang’awa, a parent and advocate, was the first to file a petition, claiming that the government did not seek public consultation before dismantling the 8:4:4 system.
Teachers, she added, were also ignored, despite the fact that they were the ones who put the plans in place.
Ms Ang’awa told the court that she had lost interest in the matter and wanted her lawyer, Mr Havi, to take over.
George Magoha, the Education Cabinet Secretary, had asked the three judges to dismiss the petition.
Senior Counsel Philip Murgor, speaking on behalf of the CS, stated that the new curriculum has taken off and should not be hampered.
Mr Murgor urged the three judges to reject the lawsuit, claiming that the aggrieved parent, Ms Ang’awa, had lost interest in it. He also opposed Mr Havi’s replacement of her.
The curriculum has been in place for six years. President Uhuru Kenyatta stated nothing will impede the implementation of Madaraka Day. The government is already planning to open junior secondary schools in January of next year.
Ms. Ang’awa, who declined to pursue the lawsuit, alleged that the state and other agencies had been adversely characterizing her since she filed the petition last year.
“Esther Ang’awa has informed me that she is not interested in continuing to pursue the petition because she has been negatively profiled by state and governmental agencies, and that continuing to pursue the petition in her name has and will disadvantage her and her child’s schooling,” Mr Havi added.
“In light of the foregoing, I feel it is right and proper that Esther Ang’awa be substituted as the petitioner so that I may continue the petition in my name, in accordance with my promise to the members of the public affected by the subject issue.”
Prof Magoha, the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development, the Kenya National Examination Council, the Teachers Service Commission, the Kenya National Union of Teachers and the Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers, the National Assembly, and Interior CS Fred Matiang’i are among the respondents, according to Ms Ang’awa. Kenya Private Schools Association, Kenya Primary Schools Heads Association, and Kenya National Parents Association are among those mentioned as interested parties.
“That the conduct of the first to the four respondents as set forth in the petition are obviously unconstitutional and unlawful, are harmful to the future of Kenya’s children, and should be halted pending the resolution of the matters addressed in the petition,” Mr Havi added.