Nemis student enrolment hits the nine million mark

Friday, December 27th, 2019 00:00 |
SMASE – Africa President Benson Banda, Education PS Belio Kipsang and Uganda MiEducation minister John Muyingo during a maths and science forum in Nairobi, recently. Photo/PD/GERALD ITHANA

About three million learners in public secondary schools have been captured on the National Education Management Information System (Nemis) and another 120,000 from private institutions.

Education Principal Secretary, Dr Belio Kipsang says more than 53,000 learning institutions have so far been registered in the Nemis.

The institutions covered are Early Childhood Development (ECD) primary and secondary sectors, where each is issued with a unique code.

Each learner registered with a birth certificate has own unique personal identifier.   

In total, 9,000 public secondary schools and another 3,000 private ones have been covered totalling around 13,000 secondary schools with data now on Nemis.

In public primary schools, the Ministry has captured 4.6 million and another one million pupils from private academies, totalling 5.6 million against a target of 9 million, translating to 60 per cent.

“Nemis is not a public school thing and it is here to stay. We have done huge investments and this is a project of Government which we are not about to run away from.

Aquinas High School KCSE 2019 candidate Samuel Odundo works as a casual labourer at his former school to raise money for his university fees after scoring an A- (minus). Photo/PD/ GERALD ITHANA 

It is a national project,” the PS said on the sidelines of 17th Conference on Mathematics, Science and Technology Education in Africa held in Nairobi recently.

He said one of the biggest challenges the Ministry is tackling is lack of birth certificates. 

The PS admitted there was confusion earlier when the ministry said it intended to collect data for purposes of validation and to confirm whether the data on Nemis tallies with what school managers have. 

“We have been working with our Interior ministry counterparts and they have registered more than 80 per cent of our learners.

We are now moving to the next level of printing birth certificates and by February next year, the primary sub-sector will have been dealt with,” the PS said.

The PS said a portal was being created to capture learners without birth certificates so that they could identify them by name, school and location.

Their names will then be printed out and shared with Interior Ministry officials for a targeted approach.

Kenya National Union of Teachers Knut) Secretary General Wilson Sossion has lauded the move by the Ministry to complement Nemis with the previous system of head count to establish the number of learners and their respective schools.

“Introduction of Nemis was a noble idea but was haphazardly done, without consultation with stakeholders.

The system has been exploited by bureaucrats out to frustrate headteachers and principals by delaying the disbursement of capitation grants,” says Sossion.

According to Kipsang, some 750,000 learners have been registered in the ECD sector and the State is collaborating with counties, which manage these facilities to have all registered.

“We have asked private schools to capture their data for all their learners so that we are able to know who has migrated from public to private schools,” explained the PS.

Those joining Form One starting January 13 will be captured on real time basis so that by the end of reporting dates, the data on all admissions. 

“The ministry can then know the number of those admitted and those who will not have reported to secondary schools, towards ensuring 100 per cent transition,” he said. 

The PS said Sh35 billion would be released for capitation for Government programmes. Usually, 50 per cent of the disbursement is released in first term.

Meanwhile, publishers continue to decry the high taxation imposed on printing of  textbooks. 

Spotlight Publishers East Africa Limited Managing Director Simon Sossion says majority of countries have domesticated the agreements, which calls for abolition of all form of taxes and levies on reading and learning materials and Kenya should consider taking a similar move.

“We have been engaging the government to review taxes on textbooks  because  under the UN Conventions, learning materials should not be taxed. 

“We are talking about 17 per cent tax. which is a huge additional cost for parents to bear. This is not only inhibiting learning but also reducing the quantity of books available for learners,” noted Sossion, who is also Kenya Publishers Association (KPA) vice chairman. 

He made the remarks at the10th anniversary celebrations for Spotlight Publishers in Nairobi recently. 

More on Education