The Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) has announced a move to replace literature and fasihi setbooks used in schools and teacher training colleges.

The state agency has since asked publishers to present literary English and Kiswahili books for evaluation in the course of the month.

The new books are set to replace the ones introduced in schools in 2018.

KICD set the deadline for submission of material for March 18, 2021, however, formal submissions are expected as soon as Friday 5.


File image of Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development CEO Charles Ong'ondo. |Photo| Courtesy|

Publishers are expected to submit a novel, a paly, and anthology of short stories for English literature, and tamthilia, riwaya, and hadithi fupi for Kiswahili.

"The literary texts should be submitted for secondary Form Three and Four students and teacher trainees in teacher training colleges. The materials presented for evaluation and granted approval will be used in Kenyan educational institutions," KICD CEO Charles Ong'ondo stated.

The announcement is expected to attract a bidding war from several publishers in the country, with the setbook market considered one of the most lucrative in publishing. 

However, the literary books are the most targeted by pirates, who have made a fortune from duplicating content. For instance, there are 751,150 registered for the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) for the year 2021. 

The new set books are expected to be studied by students who will join Form Three in April 2022. The books will be part of the curriculum for four years.

Publishers submitting books will be charged Ksh140,000 as submission and evaluation fee. Guidelines issued by the curriculum developer will require the winners to pay a further Ksh100,000 for 'correction inputting'. 

The state agency expects the evaluation process to conclude as early as April 6, after which the Curriculum Technical Committee will then evaluate the report until April 13, 2021. 

KICD will then review the committee's recommendations and announce the results on April 16. 

Ministry of Education in 2021 embarked on directly purchasing the setbooks from publishers and distributing them to schools. This has made it easier for schools and also locked out the distribution of pirated books.

MoE targets a 1:1 student-setbook ratio to bolster academic excellence.

File image of books sold along a Nairobi street. |Photo| Courtesy|