The 2011 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) results will be released tomorrow. The exam is a make or break affair for most students since it is the key determinant of whether they will continue on to college or drop off the education ladder and join scores of unemployed youth with limited economic prospects.
These results will be the first since the 2008 introduction of subsidized high school programmes.
This year’s high school leavers will still have to wait for about two years before they can join university – an artifact of the Moi Administration going back to the early 1980s when universities were shut down for an extended period due to political unrest.
I do not have the exact numbers but know that the duration of time between leaving high school and joining university for the average Kenyan student (who does well enough in high school) is closer to 6+ years than 4 years. Both the Moi legacy and intermittent strikes by lecturers and students are to blame for this massive waste of young Kenyans’ time.
The Kenyan ministry of education will release the results of this year’s Kenyan Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exam. At the end of primary school all students sit the national exam to determine which high schools they will attend.
For the first time, in the announcement will be ranked by Kenya’s 47 counties. In the past wealthier and more urban areas of the country have done better than poorer rural areas. For many critics the current education system in Kenya serves little more than replicate the existing class structure – with wealthier kids doing better in primary school, going to better high schools and then getting subsidized university education. Most poor students – the vast majority of KCPE candidates – never make it beyond high school.
In the just released results (KCPE top performers) of the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exams boys have dominated, as usual. The gender disparity, however, appears to be a result of socio-economic conditions. In Nairobi, where most girls do not have to spend hours fetching water, gathering firewood or helping mom plant the fields, girls took 55 of the top 100 slots.
Although not released yet, I am sure that the detailed results will also indicate regional disparities in the provision and quality of education. It appears that no one at Mr. Sam Ongeri’s Ministry appreciates the importance of education as an effective long-run socio-economic equalizer.
Otherwise they would not sit on their hands (when they are not stealing free primary education money) even as the country’s education system continues to reproduce the existing class system.
The state of the Kenyan education system is appalling. Read more here.
Buried in the said report is Kenya’s shameful legacy of regional disparities in the provision of public goods, including education, security and healthcare. Peripheral and frontier areas such as Western Kenya, the Coast Provinve and the arid north seem to be particularly disfavored.
And in other news, the Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) should be ashamed of itself. Apparently electricity connectivity in Kenya stands at a mere 25%. Although this number may be a gross underestimate – illegal connections approximate the norm in most of Kenya’s crowded slums – the Kenyan government ought to pull up its socks in its electrification campaign if it is to even come close to achieving its stated vision 2030.
This year’s KCPE results were released yesterday. As expected, girls beat boys (on average) in the languages. They however trailed in all the other subjects: mathematics, science, social studies and religious education. The top 100 lists in all the provinces were dominated by boys. It should disturb Kenyan educators that from a very early age Kenyan children are intellectually segregating themselves by gender. In most places pre-teen and teenage girls out-perform boys in ALL subjects. So why are Kenyan girls not doing as well as they should? Is it because of gender bias at home (as is surely the case in the country-side) or in the classroom (as might be the case in the urban areas where boys and girls have more or less equal opportunities) and what can the government/society do to reverse this?
This year’s results also showed that the government’s free primary education program was a huge flop. Yes, more children are going to school but the quality of education has plummeted precipitously. Most of the top-ranked students were from private schools. With the recently unearthed corruption scandal in the ministry and the poor performance of the free primary education program it might be time for parliament to get more hawk-eyed with regard to the operations of this ministry.