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UNESCO - United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

10/28/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 10/28/2021 05:23

UNESCO General History of Africa

Final steps for integrating the General History of Africa into the Competency Based School Curriculum in Kenya

From 11 to 15 October 2021, UNESCO gathered 17 curriculum developers, together with the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development and the Kenya National Commission for UNESCO, to review and finalize matrices for mainstreaming the UNESCO General History of Africa into the Upper Primary School and Junior Secondary School Curriculum, during a workshop that was held at the BTL International Conference Centre in Kiambu, Kenya.

This meeting provided an opportunity for the curriculum developers to gain a deeper understanding of UNESCO General History of Africa (GHA) and to be engaged through different methodologies to achieve the objective of the workshop.

In his opening remarks, the Director of the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD), Prof. Charles Ong'ondo, who was represented by Ms. Judith Muriuki, appreciated the support extended to the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development by UNESCO and the Kenya National Commission for UNESCO in ensuring that KICD complies with the directive made in 2017 by African Union Ministers of Education to integrate UNESCO GHA into the school curriculum. She applauded the partnership as it gave KICD an opportunity for other countries in Africa and beyond to benchmark with such good practices, and further noted the importance of history in showing the human kind's origin and linking the same to contemporary issues.

The 5-day finalization workshop was coordinated by Ms. Jane Nyaga of the KICD, who sought to ensure the integration of GHA into curriculum process improved the quality education for sustainable development and encouraged the development of school environments in which learners embrace their heritage, in line with the Constitution of Kenya, Kenya Vision 2030 and Kenya's Curriculum Reform Vision of an Engaged, Empowered and Ethical citizen. She further ensured that the curriculum developers finalized the matrices guided by reflections on how history education dealt with diversity; how it promotes learner's appreciation of values; foster learners' open-mindedness, respect for differences, mutual understanding, refection and cooperation; how it helps develop a sense of common humanity in the diversity of perspectives, viewpoints, memories and related emotions, and whether History contributes to inform and to transform.

In concluding this workshop on 15 October, the three main stakeholders in this process, UNESCO, the Kenya Institute for Curriculum Development and the Kenya National Commission for UNESCO, recalled how the journey of integrating the General History of Africa materials into the school curriculum in Kenya began, its ultimate goal of changing how history is taught in schools, and including a Pan-Africanist perspective, with a view of attaining the collective aspirations of Africa Agenda 2063. They further reiterated their commitment to bring this initiative to its conclusion, with the KICD tasked with developing a costed Action Plan for the publication of the matrices and related guides for all the learning levels as well as for sensitization and capacity building of teachers and key stakeholders in History and Civic Education in Kenya, including a pilot phase to implement the resources.

The importance to finalize this process and to leverage on its outputs to further engage with other Member States in the region was also outlined, with the pioneer role of Kenya and expertize built in this area acknowledged.