Comparison between the new university funding model and the former

Victor Ochieng'

Going by the immediate former varsity funding formula, Kenyan students were to get State funding based on where they fall in four categories proposed as vulnerable, extremely needy, needy and less needy.

Then, recently, there was a slight review of the funding formula. There was the introduction of five categories classed as Band 1-5.

These are Band 1(previously vulnerable), Band 2 (previously extremely needy), Band 3 (previously needy) and Band 4 (previously less needy). Then, there is Band 5, which is the new category.

New Funding Formula

Chiefs and local pastors will play an integral role in identifying various categories of students through a system known as Means Testing Instrument developed by the Higher Education Loans Board (HELB).

Based on this, a student will get different levels of funding in form of scholarships, loans and household contributions.

In order to determine a student level of need, HELB will use these parameters: Parent background, gender and course, school type, expenditure on education, family size and composition, marginalization, and person living with disability.

Initial funding formula

Vulnerable students were to get full funding through 82 per cent scholarship from the government, and 18 per cent of HELB loan. The extremely needy were to get 70 per cent scholarship, and 30 per cent HELB loan. Households of students in categories of vulnerable and extremely needy were not expected to raise any amount.

The needy were to get 53 per cent scholarship and 40 per cent HELB loan. The less needy were to get 38 per cent scholarship and 55 per cent loan. In that funding formula, households falling in the categories were to raise 7 per cent of fees.

All students with C+ and above qualified to apply and wait to be placed under the categories.

In the funding formula, students who join private universities were not eligible for government scholarships. However, for those who were eligible, the government would consider merit, level of need, national priorities, and affirmative action when selecting beneficiaries.

Reviewed funding formula

In the reviewed funding formula, all categories (Band 1-5) are eligible for scholarships and HELB loan. Then, all household will have a certain percentage of fees to raise. Consequently, there will be upkeep boom for each category.

Band 1 (previously vulnerable)- 70 per cent scholarship, 25 per cent HELB loan, 5 per cent household, Ksh. 60,000 upkeep boom.

Band 2 (previously extremely needy) – 60 per cent scholarship, 30 per cent HELB loan, 10 per cent household,  Ksh. 55,000 upkeep boom.

Band 3 (previously needy) – 50 per cent scholarship, 30 per cent HELB loan, 20 household, Ksh. 50,000 upkeep boom.

Band 4 (previously less needy) – 40 per cent scholarship, 30 per cent HELB loan, 30 per cent household,  Ksh45,000 upkeep boom.

Band 5 (new category) – 30 per cent scholarship, 30 per cent HELB loan, 40 per cent household,  Ksh. 40,000 upkeep boom.

By Victor Ochieng’

The writer rolls out career talks and training services. 0704420232

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