Private primary schools in Garissa County outshined their public counterparts, taking all the top 10 slots in KCPE results released yesterday by Education Cabinet Secretary (CS), Prof. George Magoha.
At a glance, the results showed not a single candidate from public school were among the top 10. The same was replicated in Wajir and Mandera counties.
Speaking to KNA on phone, Garissa’s Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) Executive Secretary, Abdirizak Hussein, said he, ‘was, not amused by the results’.
“I am not surprised that our children in public school performed dismally. We have insisted that without teachers and infrastructure candidates in public schools will always post poor results,” Abdirizak said.
“When you walk round our public primary schools, you get the impression that the government has either neglected them or unable to finance their infrastructural development and recruit more teachers,” he added.
It was song and dance in the schools that posted good results with St. Peters ACK in Garissa town producing one of their best performance with a mean score of 380.
Although the boys dominated in most of the schools, the girls also performed relatively well compared to the previous years.
Speaking to the press at the school compound, Mohamed Kureish, who scored 408 attributed his excellent performance to hard work, support from his parents and teachers.
Kureish,13, who want to pursue medicine in university said he wants to join Starehe Boys Center.
Thureya Ibrahim, from the same school who scored 404 and who wishes to join Kenya High School also thanked her parents and teachers for their support. Thureya urged her community to give equal educational opportunities to both boys and girls.
“I am a living testimony that girls can perform better given the chance. Its time our parents really reflect on some of the cultural practices like Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and early marriages that have worked against women in the region,” she said.
The School’s Head-teacher, Yusuf Amollo, said the teachers with the support of the parents had to put some extra effort that led to the good performance they are celebrating today.
“We had to put a lot of hard work and encouraged our candidates that they could perform. For the past four years, we have been improving our general performance and going forward we are now aiming at further improving our mean grade,” Amollo said.
At Life Frontier School in Madogo of neighbouring Tana River County, the school came tops producing the best candidate with 423, with seven of them scoring over 400 marks.
According to a delighted school Head teacher, Eunice Muruiki, the school has topped the county more than 10 times since 2002 when they first sat for KCPE.
It was dance and jubilations at the school when they learned of their excellent performance moments started trickling in.
The top student Winnie Gloria who could not hide her joy, thanked her mother who she said single handedly saw her through her education despite coming from a poor family background.
“As I am standing today to celebrate my good results I want to sincerely thank my mother for all the struggles she put in to ensure that I completed my primary education. She is surely my hero today,” she said.
“I want to extend the same gratitude to my teachers and fellow students who encouraged me throughout my studies having known my background. Without them, I could not have achieved,” he added.
The 13-year-old told KNA that she wants to join Alliance Girls and pursue a degree in medicine after her secondary school.
“I thank God that he has answered my prayers and the journey to fulfilling my dreams has just started,” she.
On her part, Mildred Akinyi, a mother of three said she was overjoyed beyond words to express her daughter’s performance.
“I knew she would perform well in her exams but I didn’t expect her to come top in her class and the county. As a parent I will continue doing what is humanly possible to ensure that she goes through her education and achieve her dream,” said Akinyi, a grocery trader at Madogo Trading Centre.
Namkuu Bakari,14 who scored 400 marks and who wants to joins Chogoria Girls said girls have proved that they can perform well given a conducive environment to study.
“I come from a community that is still yet to accept enrolling girls in school but instead marrying them off. I hope my performance will be an eye opener to those who are still holed to the old retrogressive cultural believe that don’t give chances to the girls,” she said.
By Jacob Songok