Shock as traditional giants fail to register high grades in KCSE

The Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) exam results released yesterday registered a drastic reduction in high grades.

In the 2016 KCSE, there were only 141 straight As compared to 2,636 As in 2015 and 3,073 in 2014.

While announcing the results yesterday at Shimo La Tewa High School in Mombasa, Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i noted that out of a total of 574,125 candidates who sat the examinations, only 88,929 scored between C+ (plus) and A (plain).

This was a clear contrast to the past years where in 2015, those who scored C+(plus) and above were 165,766 and 149,719 in 2014.

In 2016, a total of 4,645 scored A- (minus) while 10,975 scored B+ (plus).

Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec) boss George Magoha said the results were a true reflection of students’ abilities.

“We should not ruin our children’s future by letting them steal examinations. Those candidates who have scored C+ (plus) and above can do medicine and engineering courses at the university,” Magoha said.

The results were a shock to many public and private schools that have been used to posting good results with entire classes scoring straight As.

For example, Moi High School Kabarak, which topped the 2015 KCSE by posting a mean score of 11.667, had 289 candidates, out of which 202 scored grade A while the least candidate had a B.

This meant the entire class of 2015 qualified for university admission.

This year, Kabarak managed two As.

Maseno School, which scooped the second position in 2015 with a mean of 11.393, did not have an A this year.

In 2015, Maseno had 285 candidates and the school had 140 As and 122 A- (minus).

Their last candidate obtained B, also sending the entire class to university.


Matiang’i singled out Kenya High School and Alliance Girls High School for their consistent performance.

“I must commend some girl schools that have, unlike many other schools, nearly maintained their achievement of top mean grades in the KCSE 2016, including Alliance Girls’ and Kenya High School,’’ he said.

Alliance Girls’ had 25 candidates obtaining a mean grade of A Plain, the same as last year while The Kenya High had 21 candidates with mean grade of A Plain, one more than last year,” Matiang’i said.

The results shocked traditional top performers Alliance High School, Utumishi Academy, Kapsabet Boys, St Joseph Boys Kitale, Sacho High School, Light Academy, Nairobi School, Rang’ala Girls’ High School and Kapsabet Girls’ High School, which have been posting great results.

Matiang’i said in 2016, five subjects recorded significant improvement in performance, compared to 13 subjects that recorded
a significant improvement in performance in 2015.

He said Art & Design, Computer Studies, Drawing & Design, Woodwork and Kenyan Sign Language (504) were the most improved subjects.

There was no significant change in performance in five of the 30 subjects offered during the 2016 KCSE examination.

The number of subjects with a decline in performance was 20 in the year 2016 compared to 10 in 2015.

The CS also noted that in this year’s results, female candidates performed better than male candidates in eight out of the 30 subjects.

“These were English, Kiswahili, Mathematics Alternative B, Physics, Christian Religious Education, Home Science, Art and Design (442) and Electricity,” Matiang’i said.

But male candidates performed better than female candidates in 20 out of the 30 subjects offered.

“It is noteworthy that female candidates did not register for Wood Work and Metalwork. The subject with the highest mean score was Electricity (65.14 per cent), followed by Power Mechanics (64.87 per cent),” Matiang’i said.

On the overall grade achievement, the CS noted that there was a significant drop in the number of top grades achieved.

The Standard - 29th December 2016

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