How government can sort out the mess that is JSS implementation

By Enock Shirandula

No doubt, there is a lot of confusion in the implementation of JSS. So much so that even the C.S in charge of MOE does not have any idea on the way forward. The current disagreement between the two unions of teachers, KNUT and KUPPET, merely adds to the whole confusion. The debate has been, and still is, whether JSS should be in the primary or secondary school.

I have previously been arguing that this section of school remains in the primary for a while but progressively moves to the secondary school. What I mean is that the present grade 7 are in the primary school learning in a classroom left by those who have moved to standard 8. In 2024 they will be in grade 8 in a classroom vacated by those who will have moved to form 1. In 2025, they should move to grade 9 in the secondary school to occupy a classroom vacated by those who will have moved to form 2. And so on and so forth for the current grades 6 and 5. Going by this arrangement, the present grade 4 should be the first ones to proceed directly to secondary school without further staying in the primary school.

After thinking for quite a while now, I have observed some very important things. One, there are quite a number of classrooms in secondary schools, especially those that were built by the indefatigable Magoha, simply unoccupied. Two, the teachers in secondary schools are specifically trained to teach secondary school learners. Three, our secondary schools have a laboratory and other facilities that these learners need.

When we have most of our grade 7 classrooms bursting at the seams, should we be having any unoccupied classrooms anywhere? And again, when we have the grade 7 learners going on untaught because of teachers, why shouldn’t we take them to secondary schools where they will be taught by the ones who are there. Why should we be thinking of building of labs in the primary schools when we can use those in the secondary schools? These, among other things, make me to propose that the JSS be domiciled both in the primary and secondary schools.

The MOE should urgently audit both the primary and secondary schools to find out those that have the capacity to host the JSS. The whole exercise should be preferably done and be completed this term so that by next tem real learning starts.

I have learnt with happiness that the KPSEA examination that the Grade 6 of last year did has been marked and the results are now available.

I propose that these results be used to place the learners in the secondary schools that they chose. Those pupils who chose the secondary schools that can accommodate them right away should be made to move there next term. Otherwise, the formula I have purposed above can apply for the rest, those that have to remain in the primary school.

The writer is a retired educationist, a Kabarasi language reviewer of Kabarasi BTL Project and author of so DIFFERENT SHE WAS

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Education News - Newspaper Vol 281