alexa Boys fall behind in benchmark subjects of early education - Daily Nation

Boys fall behind in benchmark subjects of early education

Tuesday July 16 2019

Teachers Service Commission CEO Nancy Macharia

Teachers Service Commission CEO Nancy Macharia during the launch of the new curriculum at Shimo La Tewa High School in Mombasa on July 15, 2019. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

STELLA CHERONO
By STELLA CHERONO
More by this Author

Boys continue to fall behind in early education with their poor performance in culminating to low grades in national examinations.

A report released Monday by the Kenya National Examination Council’s (Knec) National Assessment Centre shows that more boys than girls were disrupted by factors like absenteeism, class repetition and indiscipline.

The National Assessment System for Monitoring Learner Achievement done on Grade Three pupils showed that a considerable proportion of pupils do not attain the 50 per cent benchmark — 47.3 per cent in English, 40.6 per cent in Mathematics and 32.4 per cent in Kiswahili — with higher numbers of girls than boys attaining the benchmark in all the assessed subjects.

COMPREHENSION

The report, presented and interpreted by Knec acting CEO Mercy Karogo, shows a disturbing trend of weak comprehension among Grade Three pupils. It blames factors, among them late enrolment for primary education and manageable issues such as absenteeism, meals, discipline and class repetition for the poor performance.

In semi-arid counties, the report says, more boys than girls were over-age with a mean age of 10.9 against 10.3 in girls. Overage, it says, is associated with low learning outcomes, as older pupils scored lower points than age-appropriate counterparts.

“Nearly half of class three pupils in Nakuru County were overage with more boys (48 per cent) than girls (37.1 per cent) being over age,” the report says, blaming late enrolment and seasonal dropout for the trend.

Girls seem to be interrupted most by dropout at a more advanced learning stage in Class Seven due to financial reasons, responsibilities at home, truancy, child labour and pregnancy.

“Reasons for repetition include; chronic absenteeism, Poor academic performance, demand by parents and transfer to other schools,” the report presented and interpreted by Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC) acting CEO Mercy Karogo showed.

Absenteeism due to sickness, lack of food and work at home, the report also indicated, was one of the reason for poor performance. Again, more boys than girls were affected by being away from school.

REPEAT CLASSES

In Nakuru County, for example, more boys (55.6%) than girls (44.4%) reported to be absent due to work at home, affecting their learning outcomes.

Also, a substantial proportion of learners repeat classes, with more boys (46.8%) than girls (40.3%) in class 3 having repeated a class, because it lowers esteem and delays their learning age. Class repetition at an advanced stage, the report shows, culminated to poor performance in class 7, class 8 and even Form Four.

“Reasons for repetition include; chronic absenteeism, Poor academic performance, demand by parents and transfer to other schools,” the report presented and interpreted by Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC) acting CEO Mercy Karogo showed.

Girls seem to be interrupted most by dropout, mostly at a more advanced learning stage in class 7 due to financial reasons, responsibilities at home, truancy, child labour, low academic achievement and pregnancy.