Thursday, November 30, 2023

How Grade Six pupils will be placed in junior secondary schools

The government of President William Ruto has made it clear that the CBC is here to stay. At the same time, it has formed a committee to review the CBC. The committee has been tasked with collection of views from the public which will form part of its report.

With the new normalized school calendar less than 60 days away, it is becoming clear that whatever review proposals the committee comes up with might not be implemented in time for the Grade Six class that will join junior secondary school in early 2023. As such, the criteria for joining junior secondary schools might be the same one that was developed by the ministry of education under former Cabinet Secretary George Magoha.

In August 2020, Grade Six pupils across the country were asked to select their preferred junior secondary schools. This marked the start of a transition to junior secondary schools that will come into effect in January 2023 in the absence of a review on the CBC system by the government.

This selection was similar to that which is done by class 8 pupils. Parents and pupils were required to select national, regional, county, and local secondary schools. Each people would select only one regional and local school as the first option and select different regional schools as second option.

For example, a pupil in Nyandarua County could not select Karima Girls and Nyandarua High School, both national schools. He or she would however select Karima Girls and Pangani Girls, or Nyandarua High and Maranda High.

Former Education CS Magoha had instructed that Grade Six pupils will be offered placement in all existing registered public and private secondary schools.

Public secondary schools which share a compound with a public primary school shall utilize the available classrooms in the primary school as additional learning space, while existing registered private secondary schools will be available for learners whose parents will pay the fees charged by the private secondary schools.

The transition of learners from upper primary to JSS, under CBC, will be guided by the assessment outcomes of the Kenya Primary School Education Assessment (KPSEA).

Also, the selection of students for admission to the JSS will be based on performance in the KPSEA, equity which will include use of affirmative action, choice of schools by learners on advice by parents and teachers and also institutional declared capacity.

“Learners, in consultation with their parents and teachers will be given an opportunity to select a public or private secondary school of their choice for their JSS education. Parents shall meet the cost of learning in private schools as is the usual practice,” Magoha had said.

For standalone junior secondary schools, only those that are registered will be eligible for selection and placement.

Students with special needs and disabilities pursuing the Stage-Based Pathway will bemoved to Grade Six based on performance in the Kenya Intermediate Level Education Assessment (KILEA).

The Grade Six learners are expected to sit for their final assessment in November 2022.

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The summative assessment will contribute to 40 per cent of learners score. The Kenya National Examinations Council will assess the 13 subjects offered at upper primary level using five papers.

They will include, Mathematics, English, Kiswahili/Kenyan Sign Language, Integrated Science which comprises of Science and Technology; Agriculture; Home Science; and, Physical and Health Education.

Creative Arts and Social Studies which combines four subjects among them Social Studies; Christian Religious Education/Islamic Religious Education/Hindu Religious Education; Art and Craft and Music.

The other 60 marks will be drawn from school based assessments administered at Grades Four (20 per cent), Five (20 per cent) and Six (20 per cent). The overall score will be reported as a summation of the scores in the five papers and will be out of 500 marks.

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