Schools were Tuesday allowed to engage learners in internal and inter-school co-curricular activities, weeks after principals, unions and the parents’ association asked the Ministry of Education to reinstate them.

They said co-curricular activities play a major role in reducing learner indiscipline as it helps them release negative energy.

The Ministry of Education said the allowed co-curriculum activities will, however be non-contact or low contact activities in line with Ministry of Health protocols.

In a circular to all regional, county and sub county directors of education, Basic Education Principal Secretary Julius Jwan Tuesday said the ministry was working on modalities for full resumption of activities.

“The Ministry of Health recommended that inter-school sporting activities may gradually resume, with strict adherence to the current guidelines prepared by the Ministry of Education. The initial focus should be on non-contact/low contact activities as guided in the protocols,” said Dr Jwan.

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Last week, Kenya Secondary Schools Heads Association (Kessha) Chairman Kahi Indimuli and Kenya Parents Association Chairman Nicholas Maiyo urged the ministry to restore co-curricular activities.

Mr Indimuli said students need the activities to relax. Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) and Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) also called for the immediate resumption of the activities.

The activities were suspended last year as part of the measures to curb the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic in schools.

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A push by the principals to have the activities restored early this year was rejected by the Ministry of Health. The Ministry of Education has also developed health and safety protocols to guide the resumption of the activities.

According to the health and safety protocols in secondary schools sports, the institutions are required to identify and justify activities that are non-contact, low risk and high risk.

“Fields shall be appropriately marked to ensure learners play different games that avoid touching or holding each other. Handshakes and hugs to celebrate achievements during and after events are prohibited.

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“The exchange and sharing of uniforms is prohibited,” reads the protocols. Schools are required to ensure that learners keep a distance of at least 1.5 metres between one another as they play. They are also required to wear face masks when not playing, and use sanitised sport equipment.

Team event organisers are also required keep records and contact information of all the athletes, athlete support personnel and any other person for ease of contact tracing.

“Body temperature checks shall be conducted to all persons at the time of entry to the venue,” reads the protocols.

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