Over one million learners set to join Form One today
Over a million pupils who sat the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exam last year will today commence their transition to secondary school.
A total of 1,075,201 learners, out of the 1,083,456 who sat the exam, are set to join various secondary schools, translating to a deficit of 8,255.
Education Cabinet secretary George Magoha said the number was arrived at after excluding inmates, over-age and those in refugee camps and just like in 2018, there has not been a second selection. The CS advised learners to report to schools they have been placed.
“Admitting all this will complete our plan in line with 100 per cent transition from primary to secondary education as required by the Constitution on provision of free and compulsory basic education to every Kenyan child,” Prof Magoha assured.
Some 33,009 students were selected to join 103 national schools, 184,816 are set to join extra-county schools, 188,454 will go to county schools while some 777 special needs candidates have been placed in their choices in regular schools.
Lack of funds
The learners are joining secondary schools amid concerns over lack of funds to run the institutions since the government is yet to disburse capitation funds.
The bulk of admissions, however, will be at the sub-county schools, which are expected to accommodate 669,145 candidates.
Magoha has also urged Kenyans to report any cases of learners who fail to join Form One and file any complaints of excessive fees and levies with the ministry, saying relevant action will be taken against affected persons and school boards of management.
“Parents are advised to only pay the amount of fees set by the ministry and report incidents of any students turned away for not paying higher fees to their respective regional education directors, county directors of education, Teachers Service Commission county directors or sub county directors for action.
Cases of lethargy with this vice on the part of these officials will also be dealt with administratively,” said the CS.
Already, Magoha warned principals against sending learners away from schools when they report for Form One admission over fees, saying firm action would be taken against such teachers.
He reiterated that the government has not revised the existing fees guidelines in schools, even as he assured that the ministry is finalising preparations to release the Free Day Secondary Education grants per learner for tuition, operations and infrastructure improvement.
He also warned boarding schools against increasing fees, saying they are also provided with capitation from government.
“We want to leave no child behind as we continue transforming the education system,” the CS said.
And as part of the wider efforts by government to address disparities and quality of education, the Secondary Education Quality Improvement Project (SEQIP) will help government construct classrooms and laboratories in the targeted counties in the country at a cost of Sh8.2 billion.
The CS said the move is expected to improve educational provision and environment for learning while at the same time creating demand for educational opportunities.
Specifically, SEQIP addresses dimensions of quality education, which include providing basic support to ensure individual learners’ safety, provision of teachers and improvement of their professional efficacies, provision of teaching and learning materials, improvement of the learning environment, advocacy and gender sensitisation and supporting educational reforms that address content quality, relevance, assessment and delivery modes.
“The SEQIP will in the long run impact national development through contributing to reduction of poverty as it enhances educational access, retention, transition and completion by learners from poor and marginalised areas/households,” he said.