Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu’s recent directive that seeks to ban studies before 8 am and after 3.45 pm is well within the law.
On Monday, Machogu banned early morning and evening classes.
According to the Basic Education Act, day public and private schools should operate between 8 am to 3.30 pm.
After 3.30pm, students should then take part in extracurricular activities from 3.30 pm to 4.45 pm.
“No day institution of basic learning and training shall require learners to report earlier than 7.15 am,” the Act reads.
Machogu said some teachers force learners to attend organized extra classes late in the evening and early in the morning before 8 am. He spoke at Nairobi Primary Junior Secondary School.
Most schools use the trick to milk more money from parents.
“The syllabus should be covered appropriately between the stipulated time. Let us not subject pupils to unnecessary mental torture,” he said.
The Act further gives different schedules for boarding schools, both public and private.
The ministry directs that learners begin classes from 8 am to 3.30 pm, and 3.30 pm to 4.45 pm will be used for extra activities.
“5 pm to 7.30 pm will be spent on self-directed activities, 7.30 pm to 9.30 pm is for night preps,” the Act reads.
After preps, the students are expected to sleep from 9.30 pm to 6 am and later engage in supervised routine activities from 6 am to 8 am.
The CS warned of a trend where school buses are seen picking up children as early as 5 am taking them to school for early morning classes.