Machogu: We are Ready to Implement Education Reforms Proposals by PWPER

KCPE, KPSEA Conducted at Night in North Rift Due to Poor Roads

Hundreds of candidates in far-flung areas of the restive North Rift were forced to sit their Standard Eight and Grade Six examinations at night due to the late arrival of the papers owing to impassable roads. In some other areas, candidates for either the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) or the Kenya Primary School Education Assessment (KPSEA) examinations had to be relocated to nearby schools after roads leading to their institutions became impassable.

In Samburu County for instance, candidates at Anderi and Kurungu Primary School in Samburu North sub county started writing their KCPE and KPSEA examination at 3pm on Monday and finished the last paper at around 10pm. A bus ferrying the papers got stuck in a river in Nyiro division early in the morning and a second vehicle, brought in by the sub-county education officer, a land cruiser could not reach the school either after it reached another flooded river. Pupils from the two schools, who had been moved to Nyiro Girls Secondary School from where they wrote their exams, sat for their first paper, Mathematics at 3.15pm, second paper, English at 6.50pm and Composition at around 8.40pm.

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Headteachers Peter Lesilla (Anderi) and John Mong’are (Karungu) told reporters that they were forced to improvise torches and lanterns for the candidates to use while undertaking the last two papers. Later on Monday night, the sub county Director of Education Husein Gufu, directed the two headteachers of Anderi and Kurungu Primary to relocate their pupils to South Horr Primary for the next two days from where they are to sit their examinations. Anderi Primary is 17km to South Horr Primary while Kurungu Primary is 8km away. Parents complained that despite the candidates being relocated to a centre that is kilometres away from their schools, the authorities had not made any arrangements from accommodation, food and other basic necessities for the candidates.

In Tot, which is on the border of Elgeyo Marakwet and Baringo counties, there was a slight delay after a local bridge was flooded as a result of a heavy downpour. KDF, Police presence A spot check by People Daily established that security was stepped up in the region with Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) and the Kenya Police maintaining their presence at Kapindasum Primary School in Baringo South which had come under attack from armed criminals last week. Rift Valley Regional Coordinator Abdi Hassan said additional security personnel had been deployed to Kerio Valley, Baringo South and Baringo South, which have in the recent past experienced the new wave of attacks which has left many people scores dead. “We want to assure our parents that everything is under control. We have dispatched enough security personnel to ensure that all learners sit their exams without any hitches,” said the administrator.

Hassan said normalcy has been restored in Kapindasum. During the incident, more than 227 Grade Six and Class Eight learners were revising in their respective classes when their school came under attack. The learners lay on floors for over six hours during the daring attack as security personnel engaged armed bandits who had surrounded the school. However, Kapindasum Primary School headteacher Elijah Kiptoon said no ugly incident has been reported. “We are hopeful that no incident will be reported during the examination period.

Despite the security challenges we remain optimistic that our learners will do well,” said Kiptoon. School reopened “The learners were beginning to pick up the pieces after their school was reopened after many years of closure but last week’s incident traumatized them a lot,” added Kiptoon. Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki was yesterday hold up in a security meeting with top security officials from Baringo and Rift Valley at Loruk in Baringo County. Kapindasum Primary School is among many other schools which were reopened early this year following a directive by President William Ruto. This is the second time the school has come under attack with armed bandits firing into the school last week sending learners and teachers into a panic. In Nandi East, Deputy County Commissioner (DCC) Leonard Mgute disclosed that five candidates had failed to turn up for the KCPE) that kicked off on Monday. Confirming the incident, Mgute noted that the parents of the five candidates had relocated from Nandi to various parts of the country. He said they had began investigations to determine why the candidates could not turn up for their KCPE exams.

“On Monday, we recorded five absenteeism cases in Nandi Hills Township Primary School in the KCPE category. Upon preliminary investigation, we found out that their parents had relocated from Nandi; however, we are yet to conduct further investigation to determine why the candidates could not turn up for their national examinations,” explained DCC Mgute. He also noted that three KCPE candidates who were forced to write their papers from the Nandi Hills Sub County Hospital after being admitted.

The administrator further noted that they had experienced challenges while transporting examinations to various centres due to impassable roads as a result of heavy rains that were experienced on Sunday evening. “We experienced a challenge in transporting examination papers to various centers in the interior of Nandi East Sub County. The roads were rendered impassable due to heavy rains experienced on Sunday evening.

We delivered the papers late, resulting in the late commencement. Going forward, we have resolved to start transporting the remaining papers early enough to ensure candidates start writing them as per the stipulated time,” he said. According to the DCC, Nandi East subcounty has a total of 106 KCPE centres with a total of 4,248 candidates comprising 2,173 boys and 2,075 girls, whereas in the KPSEA category there are 107 centers with a total of 3,526 candidates comprising 1,835 boys and 1,691 girls. In addition, five private candidates are sitting for KCPE at the Nandi Hills Township Primary, of which two are men and three are women.

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