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KENYA’S EDUCATION SYSTEM GOES DIGITAL – CHEATS BEWARE!

The vast majority of Kenyan students do not cheat in their exams…

The national education exams have not been left out of the various major reforms that have been witnessed in key areas of Kenyan life. Exam cheating in Kenyan schools has been a vice the Kenyan National Examination Council (KNEC) has been trying to fight for a long time and the Council’s efforts  seems to be paying off  as the number of students involved in cheating in last year’s exams dropped significantly to 534 (0.14 per cent) from 1,171 (0.35 per cent) in 2009.

Candidates have been accused of collecting money with the intention of buying examination papers from unscrupulous people who in most cases just sell them fake examination papers. Parents have also been blamed for fuelling cheating by smuggling mobile phones to their children during the exam period.

INSTITUTIONAL CHEATING

The greatest criticism, however, has been directed at education institutions. While announcing last year’s results, Minister of Education Professor Samuel Ongeri accused some institutions of using unorthodox methods to attain good results. He alleged that some schools have paid university students or former KCSE candidates who performed well to re-sit exams for failing students so as to boost their performance index.

KENYAN NATIONAL EXAMINATION COUNCIL TAKES ACTION

KNEC’s Senior Deputy Secretary, Edah Muiruri, said strict measures had been taken to curb cheating in this year’s examinations which would also be monitored by the Anti-Corruption Committee under the directions of Bishop Eliud Wabukala.  The two bodies agreed to partner and come up with a report on exam irregularities that would help eradicate cheating on exams in the future.

Among the new measures introduced by KNEC is a rule that ensures candidates will not sit exams in the afternoon. The exams body alleges that most cheating occurred between 2pm and 5pm. The Council will also, for the first time, issue certificates that bear photographs of candidates at national secondary and primary school levels. The new move, according to Paul Wasanga, the Chief Executive Officer of Knec, will help eliminate forgery of certificates and stamp out impersonation of candidates during examinations.

RESULTS BY SMS AND E-REGISTRATION INTRODUCED

… but KNEC CEO Paul Wasanga is taking action against those that do cheat’

Today, candidates can access their results via text messaging (SMS) to access results and the E-registration of students also began this year. If Paul Wasanga’s words as reported on The Standard (17/10/2011) are anything to go by, the long wait for result slips could end soon as candidates will be able to print them by clicking a button. To do this, candidates will obtain a scratch card from the Council, which they can then use to print out their results. “The scratch card will contain a secret code that once they log onto the Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC) website and feed [in] the digits, the authentic slips will pop up and can be printed anywhere”, said Wasanga.

JAMMING MOBILE PHONES

The Council also announced that it will soon adopt a technology to jam mobile phone networks around examination centers. Wasanga says this is within KNEC’s strategic plan 2011-2015 and could be rolled out anytime from next year.

The Forum often dishes good measures of criticism but on this occasion we are happy give a thumbs up to KNEC for what looks like a job well done so far.

KENYA FORUM EXCLUSIVE!

Who wrote, ‘The way forward is coming out and fighting for our rights… If it means fighting and destroying property then so be it’? Coming up in Friday’s posting this week…

President Kenyatta declared winner.

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