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Preparations for national exams complete in Marsabit

Preparations for both the national examinations and assessments for 15,876 candidates in Marsabit County are complete.

Marsabit County Director of Education (CDE) Mr. Titus Mbatha said that the government had also dispatched adequate food to cater for the needs of the candidates during the examination period.

Mbatha told KNA that there were 7,089 pioneer pupils to be evaluated for the Kenya Primary School Education Assessment (KPSEA) under the CBC at 211 centres across the county.

The CDE added that all logistics have been worked out to ensure that the national exercise runs smoothly adding that 6,316 candidates have been registered to sit for the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) at 172 centres of whom 2,988 are boys and 3,328 girls.

The Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) would be administered in 43 examination centres with 1,228 girls and 1,212 boys enrolled for the examination.

Mbatha further said that 18 adult learners have registered for KCSE and another 13 for KCPE at two examination centres in Marsabit Central sub-county.

The CDE said the exercise was expected to be successful as transport and security concerns have been addressed while the feeding programme was in place with rice, pulses and cooking oil rations having been delivered to the respective schools.

Mbatha said that KPSEA and KCPE had captured more candidates compared to previous years because the government and partners like UNICEF have waged a campaign to have all children of school age enrolled for class.

An out of school programme supported by UNICEF has ensured that pupils who drop out of school are tracked down and returned to school.

The programme, which operates through enrolment drive committees at the village level has seen many children who could have dropped out of school due to drought and the nomadic nature of life of the local pastoralist communities resume learning.

The elders serving in the committees are supported by the organisation through a monthly token of appreciation.

The CDE also noted that many secondary schools in the county were suffering from low enrolment but which he attributed to parents from the region preferring to schools in other counties like Meru.

This is despite the teachers’ service commission posting enough teaching staff to local schools. Mbatha called on the local leadership and parents to consider constructing and equipping their own institutions so that they can benefit from a capitation fund from the government.

He said educating children in faraway places was costly whereas teachers in Marsabit secondary schools were qualified and trained just like those teaching in schools in other parts of the country.

He said that more than 10,000 students were enrolled in schools outside causing the county to lose about Sh 200 million in capitation from the government.

By Sebastian Miriti

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