Parents want alternative health plan for learners after removal of EduAfya 

David Obuhatsa, Chairman, Kenya National Parents Association. The body has asked government to give an alternative health plan for students after the removal of EduAfya.

Parents, through the National Parents Association (NPA), have now asked the government to give an alternative health plan for students after EduAfya scheme was removed.

The Association National chairperson David Silas Obuhatsa told Education News recently that the scheme was helping poor parents who cannot afford the medical expenses of their children.

“EduAfya scheme has been good for the poor parents and if removed many will suffer. The government should come clear on what alternatives will be put in place to rescue the poor child,” said Obuhatsa.

The programme, which has been in place for the last four years, was terminated after the enactment of Universal Health Act that came into effect two months ago, with the changes in the new Act not including the scheme in the new Social Health Insurance Fund (SHIF) that is managed by Social Health Authority (SHA) which replaces National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF).

Principals, through their umbrella body Kenya Secondary School Heads Association (KESSHA), have also urged the government to ensure continuity of the programme that came to an end on December 31, 2023 – with outgoing KESSHA National Chairman Kahi Indimuli saying the termination was ill-advised.

NPA has meanwhile asked parents with school fees arrears to make arrangements with their respective school administrations to settle on payment modalities, urging principals not to send children home.

“We are informed that last term some schools sent learners home, making them fail to sit end term exams due to fees balances. Such students should be allowed into school but parents must fully commit with principals (on) how the balances will be cleared. Without funds principals are not able to run schools and therefore parents have a major role in supporting school managers by paying fees on time,” said Obuhatsa.

Obuhatsa also urged Junior School teachers to continue discharging their duties as the government works out the roadmap to converting them to permanent and pensionable terms.

“As parents, we will not allow children to stay without teachers now that schools have opened. We support and go by the government position that there are no funds to offer them permanent and pensionable terms till January 2025,” he said.

By Roy Hezron

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