Research shows that Kenya has one of the most expensive secondary education system in Africa. Presently, fees for national and county schools range from KSh45,000 to KSh136,000 year, which is not affordable for many parents.
Well, good news is that many corporates, banks on the frontline, have in the past come up with scholarship schemes to help bright but needy students across the country. The main players being Co-operative Bank, KCB Bank,M-PESA, Family Bank, ARM Cement, Kenol Kobil, and Nestlé.
To be eligible for the scholarships, pupils should meet the cut-off mark set for each county, come from a needy background and have qualified for admission to either a public national or county secondary school.
Co-operative Bank – Co-op Foundation Scholarship
The Co-operative Bank of Kenya has announced 655 scholarship positions for bright but needy students across the country through the Co-op Foundation Scholarship Scheme in 2016. The scholarship beneficiaries are selected at the grassroots level by Co-operative Societies across the country through a well-established national delegates system. Of the 655 new scholarships to the incoming Form One students, 420 will be awarded by the bank’s Regional Delegates’ Forums and the remaining 235 scholarships, at 5 per county, will be awarded by the County Governments in all the 47 counties. Additionally, the bank will be educating a total of 130 students, selected from the top performing beneficiaries of the secondary school scholarships, through their entire university education.
KCB Bank – KCB Foundation
KCB Foundation will be sponsoring at least 240 needy and bright pupils who sat for the 2015 Kenya Certificate of Primary Examination throughout their secondary education.
The scholarships bring to the total KShs. 100 million that KCB will invest in 2016 for the new cohort and the over 800 students currently under the lender’s support in secondary schools. The next group of awardees will have 40 positions reserved for pupils with disabilities.
The scholarships are meant to ease the burden of financing secondary education for parents of guardians with needy and bright pupils while supporting Kenya’s push for affordable and quality education.The scholarships will cover tuition fees, school uniforms, learning materials and mentorship activities for the four year period
The scholarship application forms are available at all KCB branches across the country. Applicants should attach their KCPE results slip and letter of admission to a national or county school, for their application to be valid. The completed application form should then be presented during the interview sessions to be conducted in the third week of January across all counties. More information on the scholarships can be obtained from the KCB Branches countrywide.
Only applicants from public primary schools are eligible for the scholarships.
Equity Bank – Wings to Fly Scholarship
Two thousand students who scored more than 350 marks in the 2015 KCPE exam will get Equity Wings to Fly scholarships.
Applications will be open until January 6, said Equity Group Foundation Helen Gichohi.
She asked applicants to go to bank branches or agents with result slips and letters of introduction from their head teachers, to obtain application forms.
The scholarship includes transport, pocket money, shopping, books and uniforms required for the four years of study.
M-PESA Foundation Academy
The M-Pesa Academy will admit two needy and bright pupils from each of Kenya’s 47 counties, who will be offered a full four-year bursary covering all their education-related expenses. Safaricom has already hired teaching and non-teaching staff for the school located near Mang’u village in Thika, Kiambu County.
“The M-Pesa Foundation Academy will be opened officially in February 2016, when it will take the first Form One students,” said the Safaricom head of corporate responsibility Sanda Ojiambo.
Sponsored schools usually charge subsidised fees, unlike the M-Pesa Academy that will be offering full bursaries to bright but poor students.
Admission to the M-Pesa Foundation Academy is not only pegged on academic performance and financial need but other attributes such as leadership and entrepreneurship skills, critical thinking and community service.
All Kenyan pupils need to do is study smart because there is a lot of funding at their disposal.
Good luck to the parents who are applying for the scholarships.