The government through the National Assembly’s Education and Research Committee on Friday, February 5, agreed to increase school fees for students in public universities.
The higher education fees charges that have been tripled will affect all the government students enrolled in public and private universities.
The fee increment will be done gradually but the initial changes will see the fee rise from Ksh 16,000 to Ksh 48,000.
The Committee noted that the current fee charges for higher institutions students have been around for over thirty years now hence the need for the changes.
However, Florence Mutua, who chairs the education committee said that the government is keen on helping parents manage the financial burden by increasing Higher Education Loans disbursements to the neediest students.
“We agreed that everything is done at HELB level because the hard economic times, for now, may not allow for any fees increment,” Mutua said.
Both the Treasury, Vice-chancellors, key education stakeholders, and National Assembly education committee members agreed to make the changes but tread carefully on the impact it would have on the parents and guardians of the affected students.
The Education Secretary, Simon Nabukwesi, noted that when the government was setting up the students’ education expenses and upkeep cost for students over thirty years ago, the cost was not too high.
In 2020, the Education CS, Prof. George Magoha, gave a go ahead to the proposal that the university school fee for university students be increased thus allowing the proposal to be vetted by the education committee and other stakeholders.
He suggested that the loan should be increased to a minimum of Ksh 68,000 and a maximum of Ksh 80, 000.
Kenyan youth yesterday joined forces to express their reservation by requesting the government to help them clear the HELB loans as a condition for voting yes on the BBI referendum.
Payment of the HELB loans has in the past burdened many students which begs the question of how the increased disbursements will be settled to allow other students access to the loans.