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New KNEC Grading System to Boost KCSE 2023 Candidates’ Scores

Grading of Form Four national examinations is set for major changes that could provide millions of students under 8-4-4 with a better chance of improving their final scores.

The new proposals to review the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) are part of the recommendations approved by President William Ruto while receiving the education reforms team.

The Presidential Working Party for Education Reform proposes that grading of KCSE should use two compulsory subjects in determining the learners’ final scores.

The compulsory subjects will be one language (English or Kiswahili) and Mathematics.

These two subjects will be used alongside a candidate’s best five performed subjects to compute the final score.

Presently, the Kenya National Examination Council (Knec) grades candidates based on five compulsory subjects and two other best-performing subjects.

Knec uses a candidate’s scores in Mathematics, which is compulsory, two compulsory languages, namely English and Kiswahili, and two sciences chosen from either Biology, Chemistry, and Physics.

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The remaining two subjects are derived from humanities/art courses, chosen from Religious Education, Geography, History, Business Studies, Agriculture, and other technical subjects.

In its recommendations, the reforms team said, “Develop guidelines for computing KCSE mean score (based on English/Kiswahili, Maths, and five other best subjects).”

The team proposed that the changes be implemented within one year. This means that if they are affected, the 2023 candidates will be the first to benefit from the new proposal.

President William Ruto, on Wednesday, indicated that out of the 11,000 secondary schools in the country, over 5,000 schools do not send a single child to university, with many of them located in rural areas.

“That is a cause for us to do some soul searching. Many of the students who end up at our universities are the children in academies and the children of people who can afford a certain quality of education. Kenya cannot continue like this; we have to rethink,” he said.

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