By Ann Wambui
“Exams test your memory, life tests your learning; others will test your patience,” Fennel Hudson.
The chills and butterflies that move around your belly when there is any sort of examination about to happen. In a blurry vision, I remember sitting in the exam hall many years ago for my Kenya Certificate of Primary Examination (KCPE) and felt like peeing myself but then at the same time I was worried if I would remember all I had prepared for. The anxiety and thoughts streaming in the mind about what the exam will look like, will the questions be relatable as per the revision for the past eight years of study, will I make the cut to the secondary school of my choice and will my parents be happy with the results? Maybe that is what the candidates will feel or maybe not. We are all different and so are our experiences.
Monday, October 28 will be the rehearsal date for KCPE where about 1.8 million candidates are expected to take the exam according to Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC) that are set to start on October 29 and end 31st.
“We have done all that is required of us to prepare and protect the examinations. No one will access the question papers before time. Parents and candidates must not be fooled,” said Prof Magoha.
The three-day period will see the candidates have ample time and comfortable environment as students from the other classes have already left for home. This came as a recommendation since 2012 where all learners have to close for the term early and give both primary and secondary school candidates space to prepare enough.
Today the town had pupils in all sorts of school uniforms as they travelled to home for a two-month holiday, as they will be opening for the next term the first week of January 2020. This is quite a long time for children to be home therefore parents/guardians have a task to ensure that their children are well followed up on.
According to The Standard, some 6,440 examiners will be invited to mark the KCPE examination. Processing and release of the examination results will be completed by end of November 2019. The processing and release of the 2019 KCSE examination results is expected to be completed before December 25.
The first paper is as usual Mathematics, followed by English and Composition. Find the timetable https://www.knec.ac.ke/2019/02/06/2019-kcpe-timetable/
“Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” Samuel Beckett
The most unusual thing happened today while in a Matatu from town to the office. A hawker trading inside the vehicle was selling Mathematics formula booklets and this one thing struck me from his long convincing speech. “We are very pretentious people such that we really want to send success cards to children but when they were struggling throughout the years, we never contributed to their education. Buying a shoe or a book or anything to help this child…the best gift to any child anywhere in the world is knowledge, and this is found in books.”
Pause for a minute and think about this. He has a very solid point don’t you think? And it happens in every phase in life even at the university level. People are always asking when the graduation is so they can make plans to come and celebrate yet no one cares through the years to call and find out how the learner is fairing but want to be a part of the end result.
Back to this piece, 2018 had 964,119 candidates registered for KCPE while in 2019, 1,088,986 registered for the same, an evident increase in the numbers. The increase in numbers is a good thing because it means more children are being enrolled in school as per the constitution requires parents/guardians to take their children to school for basic education catered for by the government.
Basic education is important as this serves as a foundation for a child’s studying years and as a contribution towards brain and physical development. It is through school that children learn how to be comfortable with other children and integrate into the society through interactions with others. Children who go to playgroups learn how to be confident and improve on their speech which is a continuous cycle throughout life.
Primary school years build up or rather prepare any learner for the next step of education life that is secondary school. Every stage in life is important and so is the person going through it. The truth of the matter is that there are many among those who sit for KCPE 2019 who will not cut it for high school and this is because of various reasons which we will talk about after the results are announced. But for now, we do wish all our candidates the very best in these exams. Clear minds and the grace to remember all they have revised for.
Just a positive note to remember for parents and generally everyone who knows of a candidate doing any exam this year. As the dancer and artist Stacia Tauscher said, “We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today.” Let us not forget that the present life of these children matter to us just as much as their future. They need encouragement and supportive people around them. Individuals that believe in their dreams.
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