During the COVID-19 pandemic the government introduced an online learning platform, but
accessibility depended on availability of learning devices and support by parents. Did parental
involvement and on-line learning further marginalise the already marginalised?
GRIC conducted a rapid assessment in May 2020. The study was to find out if children in
vulnerable communities continued learning during COVID-19 pandemic, how, and with what
support. It examined whether parents and teachers used Kenya Institute Curriculum
Development e-learning given the paucity of devices, what other learning options were
available, and what could have improved learning for marginalized children.
A rapid assessment was conducted in 2020 based on a random sample of 900 learners, teachers,
community leaders in five disadvantaged locations in the informal settlements of Nairobi and
pastoralists communities of Laikipia and Kajiado.
The findings established differences in access to education with fewer than 10% of children in
these communities accessing learning compared to 60% nationally recorded by Kenya Institute
Curriculum Development. The differences were due to lack of devices and poor support by
parents and communities, and the findings demonstrated enormous levels of learning loss.
The study narrates a powerful story on equity issues within the society. How COVID – 19 left
the marginalized communities desperate with grassroots organizations willing to support
learning hence the need to support community-based organizations as basis for resilience.
KEY words: Marginalized. Inequality. Digital divide. Learning loss.