Kenyan Bishop calls for gender equality in education

Sirimba Catholic School which was inaugurated last week

Kenya’s Bishop of Kakamega and Apostolic Administrator of Bungoma Diocese, Joseph Obanyi has called on Kenyan society to empower both boys and girls through education.

The Bishop was speaking during the official opening of St. Gabriel Girls hostel at Sirimba Catholic Parish in Bungoma. In his speech, Bishop Obanyi said that Kenyan parents and care-givers need to ensure that all children – be they, boys or girls – attend school without discrimination.

Complacency in gender parity

In June, the UNESCO Institute for Statistics said that notwithstanding significant improvements in the previous ten years, the gender gap persists on the African continent. Sub-Saharan Africa continue to have the highest rate of primary-school-age children who are out of school.

Although Kenya is one of the 19 African countries that have reached gender parity in primary education for boys and girls, in the past decade, Bishop Obanyi warned against complacency. He urged Kenyan society to guard against a lopsided gender parity advocacy that neglects the boy child.

“Today, a lot of attention has been devoted to the girl child leaving the boy child vulnerable. Ignoring the needs of the boy child is a recipe for disaster in future,” the Bishop admonished. He said society needs to come up with educational programmes that benefit and prepare all children for future challenges.

The prelate further said that efforts should continue to be made to ensure that the educational system in the country infuses moral values in young learners. He thanked both local and international donors for their generosity in supporting and providing educational facilities in Sirimba Parish.