Kenya’s President William Ruto has announced a new higher education funding model that will increase funding for universities and Technical and Vocational Education Training Institutions (TVETs) by Ksh.30.6 billion to Ksh.84.6 billion in the 2023/24 financial year. The move is aimed at addressing funding challenges that these institutions face, particularly due to the high number of students enrolled in them.

Under the new funding model, funding will be student-centred, with individual students receiving funding according to their level of need. The government will categorize students into three levels of need; vulnerable, less vulnerable and able, and fund them through scholarships and loans.

The government will fully fund vulnerable students who make up 29% of students joining universities and 42,000 students in TVET institutions. Less needy students will receive government scholarships of up to 53%, and loans of up to 40%, while able students will receive up to 38% of the cost of their program and 55% in loans.

TVET students will receive 32% for scholarships and 48% for loans. Universities will be required to declare and publicize the actual cost of their programs. Additionally, the university funding board must approve any additional charges or fee hikes that public universities may want to impose.

The funding model will begin with the 2023/24 academic year, and university placement will no longer be determined by funding. This move is expected to help address funding challenges in higher education, which have hindered the growth and development of institutions in Kenya.