NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 11 – Over 206,000 pupils who sat the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education Examinations (KCPE) last year will miss places in public secondary schools.
Speaking during the launch of the selection process, Education Minister Sam Ongeri said that only 539,792 pupils out of 746,107 who took the exams would be admitted to Form One.
"The total number of girls that will enter into national schools is 2,128 and the boys will be 2,389 giving us a total of 4,517. Last year, the total admissions into the national schools were just over 3,000 students," he pointed out.
Prof Ongeri said that students who will not be admitted to secondary schools should make full use of youth polytechnics and tertiary institutions available across the country to develop skills
"One way that we now need to look at is to be able to see how we can be able to channel some of these candidates to tertiary institutions and youth polytechnics," he said.
"There are courses there and the only thing is that we have not sensitised people and that is a function that needs to be done by the community and everybody else so that these youth polytechnics are fully in use."
He expressed the government\’s commitment to support these institutions.
"After all, the government is already assisting some of these youth polytechnics to be fully occupied," he said.
In this year\’s selection process, private schools are set to benefit more after the introduction of a new selection process which revised their quota upwards to 27.1 percent from 14.41 percent.
Prof Ongeri said this would translate to 1,224 places in national schools for private school candidates compared to 3,293 places for public schools.
"In a bid to meet the equity provision, selection of candidates to join national schools this year will take into account the number of candidates who took KCPE from private schools as compared to those from public schools," the Education Minister stated.
He explained that for the previous year, private schools registered 107,514 candidates compared to 638,593 for public schools.
He pointed out that using the old selection system, private schools would have got 651 places in national schools while public secondary schools would have been given 3,866 places.
"The formulae used for the district quota in a national school is the district candidature divided by the national candidature multiplied by the available places in a national school while for the private/public quota, either the public or private candidature is divided by the total district candidature multiplied by the total district quota," he said.
Prof Ongeri said that the principle of equitable distribution of opportunities in line with the new Constitution is what would govern the selection process.
He further instructed head teachers to ensure that new students are well received and integrated with the others after they report to school by the end of this month.
"I am aware that a number of needy selected candidates may face challenges in meeting the cost secondary education but I want to assure Kenyans that no child will be denied access," he affirmed.
He stated that selected candidates will have an opportunity to find their placements in the Education Ministry\’s website.
"As I release these selection lists, I would like to congratulate and convey my best wishes to those who have been selected to join secondary schools this year," he said.
"Those who may wish to find out the placement of selected candidates in secondary schools can do so by sending an SMS by typing their index number only and sending it to 4042 or visit our website at www.education.go.ke/results."
Last year\’s KCPE candidates were the first group of beneficiaries of the complete cycle of Free Primary Education and this number was 19,053 more than the previous year.