This is the 2nd blog in our series showcasing the winners of the African Union ‘Innovating Education in Africa’ program.
The CBC app is a digital tool developed to simplify assessments and support both record-keeping and reporting processes in Kenyan schools. It is designed to improve the repetitive tasks faced by teachers and school administrators.
The competency-based curriculum leads to new challenges
In 2016, Kenya began the journey of changing its education system because of the requirements of the 2010 Constitution and the Vision 2030 transformation agenda. The country’s goal was to develop a highly skilled, ethical and patriotic workforce through competency-based education.
The implementation of the Competency-Based Education Framework, commonly referred to as the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC), has come a long way with many success stories and an equal share of challenges. Most notable among the latter are the shortage of teaching and learning resources, the lack of trained teachers and the rushed implementation, which strained all stakeholders.
The CBC came with new requirements for assessment, record-keeping and reporting, which placed a huge burden on teachers and schools. The CBC requires that teachers regularly perform formative assessments and keep records of these assessments. The idea is that the records would be used to offer each learner a personalized learning pathway in line with their competencies.
These assessments are typically recorded with pen and paper, a process that is extremely burdensome and time consuming. This inevitably takes teachers away from their main mandate, which is to support learners.
School administrators also find it difficult to follow assessment progress when records are kept on paper. At the end of every school term, teachers spend a disproportionately large amount of time compiling student reports from all the paper-based records. It is also common for these records to be misplaced or damaged, wasting an entire term’s or year’s efforts.
The consequence is that teachers are strained and cannot give their best, administrators have little visibility as to the quality of the assessments, and ultimately, the learners do not benefit from the goals of the CBC.