Internet, lack of cash slow down Grade 3 assessment

Wednesday, September 18th, 2019 00:00 |

Sophie Njoka Brian Musyoka

The Kenya Early Year Assessment (KEYA) test for Grade 3 pupils kicked off at a slow pace in Mombasa with a section of teachers complaining that the process was cumbersome.

The teachers said slow internet connectivity had slowed the downloading of the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) assessment papers from the Kenya National Examination Council (Knec) portal.

Head teachers who spoke to People Daily said schools had not been given money to print the papers and teachers had to ask parents to cater for the printing costs or use their own money.

Printing money

“The government has not provided money for printing the exam papers. We are being forced to dig into our pockets to access cyber cafes to download, print and photocopy tests papers for pupils,” said a head teacher in Mombasa.

He said the government should provide money to cater for expenses related to the assessment.

“They expect the head teacher to take charge of downloading and upload the scores on the Knec portal on time which is a challenge since most of the schools have no internet connection,” he said. 

But Khadija Primary School head teacher Johnson Kibuga said the evaluation exercise started on time and without a hitch.

“The exercise kicked off well and we are hoping to complete tomorrow. We were able to get the evaluation papers early because we were prepared,” he said.

Kibuga said the assessment would help Kenyans understand how the abilities of learners will be gauged in the new curriculum. 

No grading

“There has been a lot of misconception about CBC and this evaluation exercise will help demystify all the claims against it. It’s an exercise that is meant to monitor the learner’s progress as they transit to the next grade,” he said.

Meanwhile, over 400,000 pupils in grade three in Eastern region began  their CBC assessment tests  in 5,000 learning centres.

The Regional Director of Education Patrick Khaemba said the pupils will not be awarded marks because the assessment aims at testing the ability of students to perform tasks in different fields.

“The assessment under CBC  is totally   different from what the pupils have been going through. Here, they are being tested on their ability while in the old system they were being  graded,” said Khaemba.

Speaking when he toured different schools to monitor the exercise, Khaemba said he was satisfied on how the assessment kicked off in the region.

He said the anxiety about the assessment among learners and teachers was unnecessary.

Joyce  Njamiu, the head teacher of  Iveche Primary School said absenteeism in the school had reduced since the introduction of CBC, as students had acquired a lot of  interest in the new system.

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