Embu County government has rolled out a Sh40million school milk programme targeting Early Childhood and Development Education pupils.
The over 17,000 children in the 394 EDCE centres have started taking tetra pack milk on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
County Education Executive, Dr. Jamleck Muturi, said they expect the programme to help improve school enrolment and retention rates and health of the children.
Speaking after touring some of the ECDE centres , Muturi said through the milk programme, they project an increase of about 5, 000 children in ECDE by next year.
The County has already entered into a contract with Githunguri milk processing company for a year, he said.
He said the programme is sustainable as it is founded on county assembly policy, adding that they are working closely with stakeholders to include primary 1-3 pupils noting had education been devolved, they would have extended the programme to other classes.
The national government has the capacity and should consider rolling out the programme to target all pupils like it happened during former President Daniel Moi’s era, he said.
Muturi said the programme was informed by the fact that most children in the County are not taking enough nutrients as farmers have focused more on growing cash crops instead of food crops.
The official said the County is set to employ about 150 ECDE teachers and construct 100 new ECDE classrooms to address anticipated shortage in case of increased enrolment rate.
He also called for the devolution of school infrastructure to improve the face of the dilapidated classrooms that have remained an eyesore for years.
He noted only the state of the art ECDE centres stand out in most primary schools in the area while other classes were mud-walled and with leaking roofs.
Source: Kenya News Agency