Form One selection: Parents up in arms over KCPE candidates placement


Form One selection: Parents up in arms over KCPE candidates placement
File image of Education CS Prof. George Magoha. PHOTO| COURTESY

The Ministry of Education has come under heavy criticism from parents who have expressed their dissatisfaction with how this year’s Form one selection process of KCPE 2019 candidates was done.

This, after Education CS George Magoha officially announced the outcome of the 2019 Form One selection process on Monday morning, with 1,075,201 candidates out of the 1,083,456  who sat this year’s exam selected to join secondary schools.

However, parents have come out strongly to condemn the selection, after some of them found out that their children had been selected to join schools which they had not chosen, or they had been selected to schools which did not reflect the performances of their children.

“The frustration is you tell your child to work hard because if they work hard they get a good school. My son worked hard but where he has been selected to join is not where he worked hard so as to get a better school,” Simon Mogambi told Citizen TV.

His son, Ian Monyenye, scored 410 marks and is to join Nanyuki High School; however, the parents had expected him to go to Mang’u High School.

“I still want to be optimistic that I may have another chance at Mang’u High School which was my son’s choice,” Mogambi said.

According to the announcements made by Prof. Magoha, thousands of candidates who sat this year’s KCPE exam will miss slots in their most preferred schools of choice due to the huge scramble for positions at top national schools.

He added that the selection panel faced a hard time in placing students to some specific schools that had a high demand.

A total of 30,000 candidates were placed in schools they had not chosen, due to unavailability of vacancies in home counties while other candidates opted to select one or two choices of secondary schools against the required threshold of 11, thus limiting placement by their preferred choices.

Moreover, other top KCPE performers could not be placed in schools of their choice, since majority of the candidates selected top schools which have no capacity to admit all of them thus some were selected in schools they had not chosen.

For instance, Pangani Girls National had 111,817 applications yet it has a capacity of only 336 students. Alliance High school, with a capacity of 384 students, had 83,489 applications while Kenya High had 49,727 applicants yet it has a capacity of only 336 students.

Another challenge noted during the selection was inadequate capacities of places in secondary schools in some counties. For instance, Nairobi county with a candidature of 62,973, had only 23,613 slots, creating a shortfall of 39,360.

Mombasa County with  18,989 candidates, had 5,126 allocated slots, creating a shortfall of 13,863.

Kilifi with 34,404 candidates could only accommodate 10,493 students, creating a shortfall of 23,911 slots.

The students are required to report to Form One between January 13 to 17 next year.

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