Education

Flood-damaged Tana Delta schools to be permanently relocated – CS Machogu

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CS Machogu said the ministry had allocated funds to the renovation of flood-damaged schools and the relocation of others to ensure uninterrupted learning.

At least 22 schools in Tana Delta Sub-county, which were damaged by heavy rains and floods, will be permanently relocated, Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu has announced.

Speaking on Saturday during a tour of the affected schools and camps for the internally displaced, Machogu said the ministry had allocated funds to the renovation of flood-damaged schools and the relocation of others to ensure uninterrupted learning.

“We have set aside funds that will be augmented by the National Government Constituencies Development Fund (NG-CDF) for the construction of classrooms and infrastructure improvement,” he said.

Flooding in the March to May long rain season left severe damage across the country, affecting housing, transport, learning, and business.

Machogu also noted that more teachers would be deployed to the area following a shortage due to the adverse weather conditions. He encouraged parents to enrol their children in teacher training colleges to address the long-term need for local educators.

“We are aware of the shortage of 297 teachers and are committed to sending more this year to fill this gap. Education is the great equaliser and we have vacancies in the teaching profession. However, in Tana River, very few qualify," he explained.

"I urge parents to encourage their children to pursue teaching courses to ensure local employment and reduce dependency on teachers from other regions."

The CS was accompanied by Kello Arsama, the Principal Secretary for Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL) and Garsen MP Ali Wario.

Kello added that the government was distributing building materials, including iron sheets, as well as food supplies to residents displaced by the floods, following a directive from President William Ruto.

“The President has tasked me with ensuring all flood victims are resettled. We are providing building materials and food items to help them rebuild their lives,” he said.

Ali thanked the national government for its efforts to resettle to prevent a recurrence of their perils.

“Many schools were affected and many people are in camps. We need a teacher training college in Garsen to develop local teachers,” he said.

Following the heavy rains, the government announced that approximately 1,967 schools were affected while Save the Children the floodwaters submerged or destroyed at least 62 primary schools in Kenya, leaving more than 15,000 children with nowhere to learn.

It noted that about 34 cases of cholera were reported along the Tana River and there were fears that the number would rise when schools reopened.

The assessment also indicated that over 20,000 toilet blocks were either sunken or severely damaged by raging floodwaters, posing serious health risks to over 1.5 million schoolchildren across the country.

The raging floods killed more than 250 people and displaced over 250,000 people.

School reopening was postponed twice to ensure safety.

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