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Addressing Gender Based Violence In Kenyan Schools

Addressing Gender Based Violence in Kenyan Schools

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In the context of the project on Addressing Gender Based Violence in Schools in Kenya, UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa in Nairobi in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology and the Teachers’ Service Commission together with other key stakeholders in Education in Kenya organized a two-day training workshop for the County Directors of Education, from 14th -17th February, 2016; and County Teacher Management Directors, from 28th February to 2nd March 2016. The aim of the project is to build the capacity of key education personnel in [prevention and response to cases of GBV in schools and the wider education sector. The training workshops targeted the CDEs and TSC Director specifically to educate them on the actual meaning of the concept of GBV, the role of Culture and masculinity I perpetrating cases for GBV and the rational for addressing the pandemic in the post 2015 agenda.

The format for the trainings involved presentations and plenary sessions with facilitators from the Judicial Service, the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), Kenya Chapter, and FEMNET among others. Both workshops were conducted at the Lake Naivasha Simba Lodge in Naivasha, Kenya. During the training workshops, findings of a Rapid Situational Analysis on Gender Based Violence in the education sector was presented. The analysis was conducted to identify need for training and also to inform the development of a training manual on GBV for the education sector.

  • The study highlighted attitudes towards Gender Based Violence in schools amongst various stakeholders, including learners as well as establishing the magnitude and forms of Gender Based Violence in schools.
  • The participants were given an opportunity to comment on the report and to analyze the draft of the proposed training manual. Some of the recommendations that emanated from the two training workshops included:
  • The need to integrate Gender Based Violence in the curriculum
  • The need to develop an education sector policy on GBV to guide interventions for effective prevention and response;
  • The importance of training beacon teachers and students to support the efforts for prevention and response to GBV in schools;
  • The need for community outreach and public education for attitude change;
  • The importance of coordination and leadership in preventing and responding t GBV
  • The crucial role of a multi-sectoral approach to GBV prevention and response in the education sector;
  • The importance of up-to-date data to inform strategic planning and targeted intervention by the Ministry of Education and partners in preventing and responding to GBV in the education sector;
  • The importance of partnerships for effective response to GBV in the education sector.
  • The groups further recommended incorporation of the emerging forms of Gender Based Violence like cybercrimes, gambling (Sport Pesa) among others in the policies and in the curriculum.

Mr. Simon Kavisi, the TSC Deputy Commission Secretary, highlighted the need for a holistic, integrated and common child protection strategy with state and non-state actors namely Ministry of Education Science & Technology (MOEST), the national police, Judiciary, Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD), Directorate of Children Services, Provincial Administration and NGOs to effectively address and mitigate against Gender Based Violence in the Education sector. The trainings provided an opportunity to also take stock on measures put in place to address Gender Based Violence in Schools in Kenya and formulate a way forward, which enabled the County Directors of Education and the County Teacher Management Directors to generate a work plan for to be used for addressing Gender Based Violence in Schools and in the Education Sector at large.

The trainings featured group work sessions where participants went reviewed and gave comments on the draft training manual that was developed by UNESCO consultant, as well as discussed the policy and legislative gaps for addressing Gender Based Violence in the Education Sector; handling of perpetrators and survivors of Gender Based Violence, addressing Gender Based Violence in the Context of Devolution, the emerging trends of Gender Based Violence, sharing of success stories, identification of existing gaps and presentation of case studies on best practices on handling cases of Gender Based Violence in Schools among other topics.

Priority follow-up actions such as the need for a multi-sectorial approach to effectively and efficiently address Gender Based Violence in the Education sector and the need for concerted efforts to increase awareness of the teachers, students as well as community members were also identified. The importance of partnerships was emphasized during both training workshops for funds mobilization and exploitation of existing expertise and services for effective response to GBV.

The training workshop of the County Directors of Education was attended by 37 County Directors and 47 County Teacher Management Directors. The Deputy Commission Secretary of the TSC, Mr. Simon Kavisi and Mrs. Mary Rotich, the Director of Teacher Management at the Teachers Service Commission were present at the training for the TSC Directors. Mr. Kavisi officiated the official opening ceremony in the presence of the Secretary General of the Kenya National Commission for UNESCO, Dr. Evangeline Njoka. The KNATCOM was represented in both the training workshops. Other notable representatives were from the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, National Council for Persons with Disability, Kenya Institute of Education Management, Kenya Institute of Special Education and the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development. The trainings are part of the activities in the project entitled “Addressing Gender Based Violence in Schools in Kenya” which is funded by the Government of Greece.

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