By Amoto Dennis.
Almost 100,000 children are out of school in the county and most are roaming in urban and rural hamlets, participants at an educational stakeholder meeting were recently told in Masalani.
The situation prevails in the region despite Compulsory education and Free Primary Education (FPE) law being active in Kenya.
A United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) education specialist, Osman Mohamud made the disclosure during the launch of a programme to lure more children to school. He accused various education players for the low enrolment.
He said child labour, early marriage, Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), poverty, drought, ignorance, pastoralism and negative attitude have made unholy alliance to ensure low enrolment and high dropout rate.
He further blamed the National and County governments and other players of failing to enforce the compulsory and free education law to ensure all school-age children are in school.
“It makes realization of free primary education in the county useless , if a larger number of children who ought to have been in school are roaming around in urban and rural setups in Garissa,” said Mohamud .
He disclosed that an initiative dubbed ‘promoting access to quality education for out of school,’’ has been launched targeting 3,375 children who are among the over 10,000 non-school going children in Ijara Sub-County.
He revealed that the initiative is supported by Finn Church Aid (FCA) who is funding implementation of the programme. The international body works in 15 countries.
The FCA Education Officer Saadia Maalim Mohamed said the programme will closely work with stakeholders in the Sub-County to ensure provision of basic primary education which is a universal child right.