NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 18 – Candidates preparing for the 2020 Kenya Certificate for Secondary Education and Kenya Certificate for Primary Education examinations will be assessed by April 2021, the education ministry assured on Thursday.
Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha however said the ministry could merge the 2020 exams with those scheduled for 2021 if the government is unable to reopen schools for the administration of the exams by April.
He told the Senate Ad hoc team on COVID-19 on Thursday that it would not be feasible to do the exams beyond April 2021, indicating the exams could be deferred to November 2021 if the situation does not allow examiners to administer them by April.
“In terms of the examination timetable for now we are hoping after we have consulted thoroughly, that perhaps the latest we can do exams is April. We must be prepared for what I don’t want to say but you can imagine,” said the Education CS.
This comes as stakeholders in the education sector including the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT), Universities Academic Staff Union (UASU), and Kenya Human Rights Commission have proposed that schools across the country remain closed until such a time when the COVID-19 infections reduced significantly.
The organizations recommended that national examinations be pushed to the first quarter of 2021 given the uncertainty surrounding the Coronavirus pandemic.
The team has also recommended that all schools serving as quarantine centres be vacated immediately and fumigated before schools re-open.
The Kenya Certificate of Primary Education examination is scheduled to start on November 2 and end on November 3, while the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education exam is set to start on November 4 and end on November 30.
Senators led by the Committee Chairman and Nairobi Senator Johnson Sakaja advised the ministry to consider writing off the current academic year in light of COVID-19 disruption.
“Won’t it be more practical, because I know we have to keep giving home, instead of kicking the can down the road especially because of our candidate to some extent just rule out this year?” Sakaja asked.
In March, the government closed all schools in a bid to avert the unrestrained spread of COVID-19.
Kenya has so far reported 4,044 cases of the Coronavirus, 107 fatalities and 1,353 recoveries since March 13, when the local case was announced.