Massive changes to be witnessed in KNECs grading systems


The Presidential Working Party on Education Reforms (PWPER) has recommended radical changes to the way the Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC) grades learners after the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations.

The Prof. Munavu led team, recommended that KNEC drops the current grading system and proposed  KNEC’s computation of the KCSE exam mean score be based on Mathematics, English or Kiswahili, and five other subjects in which the learner performs fairly well.

Currently, the grading system for KCSE considers seven subjects including English and Kiswahili, Mathematics, two Science subjects and two other subjects.

The team urged that the current  computation gives disadvantage to some learners whose best-performing subjects are not considered, if not within the cluster.

“It is worth noting that both English and Kiswahili measure the literacy level of a learner, while Mathematics and any Science subjects evaluate the numeracy aspects of the learner,” the panel said.

The new recommendation will be game changers for those students who do not do well in English and still qualify for courses including Medicine, Law and Engineering which over the past few years have been reserved and dominated for students with good grades in English.

Consequently, the move will also see learners who score well in Kiswahili proceed to study Education at the university level despite failing in English which is a huge boost to them since most universities had raised the cluster points for some courses, including education, with those seeking to study education required to have at least a C (Plain) in English.

However, under the fresh proposals, universities will consider either English or Kiswahili, while KNEC will also not consider both subjects while computing mean grades.

”The examinations are high-stake assessments with consequences to the learners based on their performance.

Learners who fail to obtain quality grades in the examinations often drop out of school, leading to a high wastage of a youthful population.” the committee noted

By Vostine Ratemo

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