By Juliet Omelo: NAIROBI, Kenya Aug 17 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has declared an end to the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) examinations as the government rolls out the new Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC).
With the new program, Grades 7,8 and 9 will be domiciled in secondary schools with more focus on child development–effectively bring to an end the examination-based culture.
“All learners including those with disabilities will be given an equal opportunity to excel in their areas of abilities and interests, underpinned by comprehensive value-based education,” President Kenyatta said at a national education conference held at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) in Nairobi.
The president added that there will be no examinations in grade 6, to facilitate a 100 percent transition from primary school to secondary schools.
Kenya has not been able to achieve this during the 8-4-4 system, mainly due to failures in KCPE examinations.
President Kenyatta said the new reforms in the education curriculum are necessary to ensure the provision of quality education that provides learners with relevant skills to become competitive in the fast-growing global economy.
He assured that the government is committed to fully facilitate the reforms in the education sector as they are relevant in the realization of Kenya’s long-term goal of transforming the country into a newly industrialized middle-income economy that provides high quality of life to all citizens by the year 2030.
President Kenyatta however, acknowledged existing challenges in the implementation of the CBC system and called on the support of all stakeholders in making the new curriculum a success.
“Indeed I am aware that the implementation of such a major reform will inevitably pose some challenges and that is why I seek your support in ensuring that we build on the gains of the Competency-Based Curriculum,” said the president, adding that lack of infrastructure in schools should not bar learning from taking place, while assuring Kenyans that the government is working on improving the learning environment in schools.
The Head of State has blamed parents for the increased levels of drug abuse and criminal cases among the youth, saying that excess pressure put on students to pass examinations often lead to depression and abuse of drugs.
The competence-based education program is purely practical and focuses on core skills that will enhance creativity to learners and enable them to be able to apply them skills in future.