Parents storm school to protest poor KCSE results

St Mathews Cheptantan Secondary School signpost. The school in Endebess constituency, Trans Nzoia County had a mean score of 2.88 in the 2021 KCSE  exams.

Photo credit: Gerald Bwisa | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Four students topped the school with a Grade C+, 11 had a C Grade, 12C-, 25D+, 55D, 97D- and 13E.
  • Mathematics, Chemistry and Biology scored the poorest grades.
  • In 2020, the school had 166 candidates and a mean score of 3.267.

Irate parents stormed St Mathews Cheptantan Secondary School in Endebess constituency, Trans Nzoia County, to protest its poor performance in the 2021 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations and alleged school mismanagement.

More than 30 parents, waving twigs, marched to the school demanding that the headteacher be transferred.

They locked the school gate and doors to all offices and accused some of the teachers of having intimate relationships with their students, reporting to work drunk, saying this had contributed to the poor performance.

"We are surprised that all our children scored Es. How is that possible? We demand that the headteacher be transferred immediately," said Mr Alfao Kiboi.

The school had 217 candidates and a mean score of 2.88 in the 2021 exams, according to the acting deputy principal George Chemos Chemengich.

In 2020, the school had 166 candidates and a mean score of 3.267.

The 2019 mean score was 3.142 with 117 candidates; 2018: 3.57 with 98; 2017: 2.96 with 94; 2016: 3.5 with 81; and 2015: 5.92 with 57. 

Mr Kiboi said the 2021 scores were discouraging to the children.

“Instead of going up, they are coming down. We need the government to intervene to rectify the situation and avert further failure,” charged the angry parent.

St Mathews Cheptantan Secondary School gate.

Photo credit: Gerald Bwisa | Nation Media Group

A meeting that had been scheduled between the school management, parents and county education officers on Thursday was postponed to next week.

Parents complained about non-payment and delayed payments to non-TSC teachers and suppliers of the school.

But Mr Chemengich, the acting deputy principal, blamed parents for the poor performance.

"Most of these parents are the ones who tell their girls to go engage in sexual affairs with older persons. When they become pregnant they are the ones who demand money to settle the case. How would the children produce good results with this kind of parenting?" he observed.

He said the principal had only been at the school for a year and should not be blamed for the poor results, adding that the students were unruly and a headache to manage.

He also said the entry marks for students were low, ranging between 100 and 200, with few admitted with 250 and above.

“The teacher-student ratio is very low. TSC teachers are 17 and 17 are employed by the school,” he said.

He rejected parents’ claims that teachers reported to school intoxicated and some had relationships with students.

He advised the parents to present their grievances to the sub-county education office.