NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 21 – Some 759,603 students out of 927,401 who sat the 2015 Kenya Certificate of Primary School Education (KCPE) examinations are set to join secondary schools this year.
Of this figure, 23,085 students will be enrolled in national secondary schools across the country.
Speaking during the launch of the Form One selection, Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i stated that the high number of students joining national schools is as a result of the upgrading programme that saw the admission’s capacity of national schools increase from 4,000 in 2012 to 23,000 in 2016.
Matiang’i explained that between this period, national schools increased from 18 to 103.
“All the 7,056 candidates who got 400 marks and above have been admitted to national schools regardless of whether they came from private or public schools. We have admitted them to national schools of their choice,” he said.
He further pointed out that the top students in each county will also be placed in national schools in a bid to achieve equity during the selection process.
“We have about 759,603 places available in Form One across the country so really, we have done our best and I am grateful that the consultations we have been having are bearing fruit. We had a very good meeting with the Kenya Private Schools Association and it is good that we are understanding each other,” he stated.
County schools will admit 123,400 students, extra county schools, 63,990, sub-county schools 481,318 and private schools 66,351 students.
“Our children make choices or sometimes they do not make good choices and then it comes to this point and everyone wants to see us because they want their child to go to Alliance, Mangu, Moi Girls Eldoret or to State House Girls. Please, my fellow parents, let us take keen interest when we are guiding our children,” Matiang’i outlined.
The education CS also revealed that 166,000 students who were part of those who sat the KCPE will miss places in secondary schools this year.
Matiang’i observed that this represents 18 percent of the candidates and expressed the government’s commitment to absorb them into vocational training institutes.
The education CS stated that these will enable them develop alternative pathways, so as to avail more avenues for them to further their education and training.
“My ministry is alive to the fact that 18 percent of the 2015 candidates may not be placed into secondary schools. We wish to inform the public that, in conjunction with county governments, we will develop alternative pathways, including youth polytechnics so as to avail more avenues for youth to further their education and training.
He stated that these institutes will not only help in increasing transition rates but also provide opportunities for vocational skills development.
“We have over the years improved the capacities of these institutions and are confident about their capacity to absorb the bulk of these students. Youth polytechnics are entry institutions in our alternative pathway in provision of education,” he said.
He pointed out that these institutions will not only help in increasing transition rates within the basic education but also provide opportunities for vocational skills development, a critical prerequisite for national development.
He explained that the demand for technical skills in the country is on a steady rise and that this has necessitated a lot of emphasis on the expansion of vocational education and training institutions.