In a significant educational reform move, Kenya is set to revamp the grading system for the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE). This change comes following an announcement by Ezekiel Machogu, the Education Cabinet Secretary, and aims to broaden access to higher education opportunities for Kenyan students.
Under the previous grading system, students’ final grades were determined by five compulsory subjects plus one humanity course. However, the newly introduced system will evaluate students based on two compulsory subjects and any five other best-performed subjects, effectively altering the way students’ academic achievements are assessed.
The two compulsory subjects in the new grading system are Mathematics, a single language, and five of the best performed subjects. The language that yields the higher performance will be considered in the grading process. Similarly, it won’t matter what subjects are best performed, those will be the ones used in the final grading.
In the previous grading system, students were assessed based on Mathematics, English, Kiswahili, the two best-performed sciences, and two other best-performed electives, including a humanity course. This change represents a significant shift away from the previous structure, streamlining the grading process to create a more equitable and inclusive system.
The primary objective of this educational reform is to increase the number of students who qualify for university and diploma education. By allowing students to select their best-performed subjects from a broader pool, the new system aims to recognise and reward individual strengths and talents, promoting diversity in higher education.
The implementation of the new KCSE grading system has already generated considerable interest and discussion among educators, students, and parents across Kenya. As the country transitions to this new approach, all eyes will be on its impact on the accessibility and quality of higher education in the nation.