Students and Fire in Schools
In 2016, there were many cases of students setting fire to schools in Kenya. There was a major crackdown on how tests were given at the time, and the government was cracking down on cheating.
Although some officials said that the disturbance in the schools was partly caused by clannism and political influence, it was unclear why kids went on the rampage.
There has been an uptick in school fires recently, and records reveal that the majority of the institutions burnt are boys’ schools. Is this merely a case of boys misbehaving?
It has been almost an entire year at home due to coronavirus restrictions, and now these students have gone back to strict rules and regulations in boarding schools.
Many boys were probably working, perhaps operating boda bodas and contributing their earnings to household budgets.
Some learned how to run small businesses or even worked with their parents because staying home and just eating was not an option for many, it was economically impractical.
Then here came 2021, and the government declared that schools be opened amidst the coronavirus pandemic. One has missed an entire year, and for some, it was the year they were to sit their final examination.
The students now have to take the examination in a few weeks, and squeeze a year’s syllabus into a few months, then sit an examination that will determine their future.
By the time a child decides to risk everything to burn school property, it cannot be blamed on just bad behaviour. Some would argue that corporal punishment needs to return because children these days are behaving badly.
Children these days are dealing with matters unheard of: Who would have thought they would live through a pandemic and learn while wearing masks all day and keep distance from their friends?