The Ministry of Education and Sports has set 30th June 2023 as the deadline for the re-registration of private schools across the country.
Five years ago, the Ministry of Education and Sports recalled the licenses of all private schools and ordered them to register afresh to obtain new certificates of registration valid for only five years.
According to the Ministry of Education, the process is aimed at ensuring that all the schools that were licensed by the Ministry still follow the required standards. The ministry says the current registration process has no expiry date making it easier for some schools to abuse it.
To obtain a new registration certificate, the schools are supposed to meet 10 important features and submit evidence to the Ministry of Education through the District Education departments. The requirements are evidence of land ownership, an old certificate if any, the Uganda National Examination Centre, and Education Management Information System numbers.
Other requirements are details of school owners, next of kin, school location, and staff lists among others.
George Mutekanga the Assistant Commissioner in Charge of Private Schools and Institutions says that although a big number of schools have been registered, many others are yet to adhere to the directive.
Mutekanga cited Luwero district where only 57 out of 97 private secondary schools have obtained new registration certificates.
He said that the Ministry of Education and Sports has set 30th June as the deadline for exercise and thereafter publish in the gazette all schools that are registered to operate in Uganda.
Mutekanga says that schools that will miss in the gazette will be deemed illegal to operate and be closed down.
Fred Mukinda the Director of Luwero Hill College says that registration is in good faith and benefits them too.
Mukinda says that some schools had changed directors due to death or other factors but have not yet updated by the Ministry of Education.
Mukinda adds that some schools have been slow to register due to a lack of sensitization by the Ministry of Education.
Daniel Ssajjabi the Chairperson of Luwero Private Schools’ Association says that the delay to register was due to COVID-19 disruption and financial constraints but the schools are working to obtain the new registration certificates.
Under this arrangement, the education ministry recalled all the over 17,858 private schools’ registration licenses.
According to Education Act 2008, sections 31 and 32 any person who intends to operate a private school must seek permission, a license, and a registration certificate.