School principals were once again locked out of Form One selections, which relied on technology to place students in secondary schools.
Today, Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha will announce the national schools that the more than 30,000 top performers will attend. The exercise will be held at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD).
In placing the candidates, the team led by Director of Secondary Education Paul Kibet considered merit, equity, choice and affirmative action.
The best five candidates of either gender have been placed in national schools based on their choices to ensure the institutions represent the face of Kenya.
This means that candidates with as low as 300 out of 500 marks will get their way to national schools, especially those from marginalised areas.
A source privy to the process told the Nation that the selection team had to adjust marks for those joining national schools after a decline in the number of candidates who scored 400 marks and above in this year’s Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) examinations.
“The selection is done electronically in order to minimise manipulation,” said the source, who requested anonymity.
This year, the number of candidates who scored 400 marks and above dropped to 9,770 (0.90 per cent) from 11,559 (1.10 per cent) last year.
And in order to enable candidates to select their preferred schools, the Ministry of Education in July allowed them to revise their choices based on their performance in internal examinations.
On Sunday, Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang confirmed that the selection was complete and students will know today the schools they have been selected to join.
But he declined to disclose more information on the selection, saying the results will be made public today.
After the release of the selections, focus will now shift to extra-county and sub-county schools, selections, which will be done between December 3 and December 5.
“The ministry has developed watertight criteria to ensure the process is fair, objective, transparent and in keeping with all forms of meritocracy,” Prof Magoha said while releasing the KCPE results two weeks ago.
The regional selection will take place in 11 designated centres across the country.
The 1,083,456 candidates, who sat for the examinations, will be eyeing about 10,000 secondary schools, with focus on elite national schools that are thought to be a direct ticket to the best universities.
Of these, 543,582 (50.17 per cent) are boys and 539,874 (49.82 per cent) girls.
Students will also be able to join 734 extra-county schools, while others will go to 1,412 available county schools.
There are also 6,451 sub-county schools and 1,164 private schools. A majority of the students will join county and sub-county schools as the government pushes for 100 per cent transition.
A report by the Ministry of Education indicates that there are 123,399 spaces in extra-county schools, while 142,358 slots are available in county schools and 700,000 more in sub-county schools.
Selection of candidates to extra-county schools is based on a ratio of 20:40:40, where 20 per cent is reserved for the host sub-county, 40 per cent for host county and 40 per cent for counties other than the host county.
In addition to its 20 per cent allocation, the host sub-county shares in the county’s share of 40 per cent.
The sub-county quota in the host county in an extra-county school is based on its candidature strength.
Available places in county schools are shared out between sub-counties in the ratio of 20:80 — 20 per cent of places are reserved for the host sub-county and 80 per cent for the host county, shared out equitably among all the sub-counties therein, the host sub-county inclusive.
Sub-county school selection is based on 100 per cent placement of candidates from the host sub-county based on merit and choice.
Preselection is conducted before the main selection. This applies to SNE schools and five national schools, namely Starehe Boys, Starehe Girls, Moi Forces Academy Nairobi, Moi Forces Lanet and Utumishi Academy.
Starehe schools select 100 per cent of their capacities while the disciplined forces schools select 80 per cent, with the remaining 20 per cent filled by the ministry during the main section.
Lists of preselected candidates submitted to the ministry are captured digitally to avoid double selection. All candidates selected under this category are assigned the status “Pre-select”.
Candidates to be considered for preselection are expected to have applied to respective schools for consideration.