What you should know: Universities and colleges urged to reopen to pave way for 2020 KCSE candidates who are yet to join institutions of higher education, top schools in KCSE reveals secrets for their exemplary performance and why Mark Kogo Kipkoech wonders if there’s any nearby university offering Music/Medicine combination.
1. Let universities and colleges reopen fully
Middle-level colleges and universities closed in March following President Kenyatta’s mandate to control the spread of Covid-19. They had just opened for a quarter of a year. In 2020, the institutions shut down for a very long time, losing an entire academic year.
Schools and technical training colleges continued studies a week ago but most universities remain closed despite President Uhuru, on Labour Day, having lifted the Covid-19 restrictions and asked universities, school and colleges to resume.
The Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service (KUCCPS) will before long kick off the admission of over 143,000 understudies who score grade C+ and above, to clear the accumulation in the schooling area.
It is in this manner in good thoughts that universities and tertiary colleges ought to declare their new academic schedules, reopen for the continuing understudies and make ready for admission of the secondary school leavers.
Reports have it that some higher institutions of learning are doing online classes however, issues, for example, varied internet connectivity in different places have posed a major challenge to the education sector.
Research has shown most learners and teachers don’t have access to gadgets and internet connectivity to facilitate virtual learning. It’s worse for practical subjects, which require the physical involvement of learners and teachers.
Students have lost a great deal of time because Covid-19 made significant interruptions to the learning cycle. Subsequently, every exertion should be made to recuperate the lost time in case we think twice about it as a country.
Research evidence shows that students lose a great deal as far as careers, wage earnings and future economic prospects if they stay for a long time inside the virtual learning framework. Some even drop out on account of disappointments as they think that it’s hard to work on the web.
Universities and other institutions of higher learning that remain closed should reopen for learners to
Universities and different establishments of higher learning that remained closed ought to open for learners to proceed with studies sooner than later.
Source: Editorial article at Nation Africa.
2. Secrets of producing top grades
Schools that outperformed in the 2020 Kenya Certificate of School Education (KCSE) examination have uncovered insider facts behind their exceptional achievement.
They do not limit the secrets to discipline and cooperation only, but in addition prayers and the actual presence of principals to monitor the learning interaction continually.
Other vital components adding to the excellent exhibition incorporate students’ Form One entry grade, robust parental support and teachers’ devotion.
Principals say motivating learners to make them have faith in themselves, strong alumni presence, timely syllabus coverage, bench-marking with top schools, and staff room discussions similarly lead to great examination results.
Below is what some principals from top schools in 2020 KCSE had to say on their outstanding performances after The Standard interviewed them.
“Teachers are the core drivers of the school’s intended goals and strong leadership ensures teachers are in school, in the classrooms and students are learning,” says Kapsabet Boys High School principal Sammy Maiyo.
Christine Chumba of the Moi Girls’ Eldoret says “It starts with the powerful presence of the principal and cascades the discipline to teachers and students. Commitment by teachers is also essential. Without these, everything else collapses and excellent results will be scarce”
Mrs Susan Owino of Rangala Girls in Siaya says understudies and staff should set targets at the start of each year. She says her staff has solid welfare and hold meetings that strengthen their bond to guarantee solidarity and continued enthusiasm.
“We encourage healthy competition and we also get support from stakeholders such as parents, the local community and the board of management,” she adds.
“On Saturdays, students do practical sessions in the laboratories to improve their performances in Biology, Physics and Chemistry. We alternate the subjects.”
The heads advise principals must once in a while talk to students to understand their problems. “Understand what they want to be improved. Call individual subject teachers and also ask them what they need to be improved and what their challenges are,” says one principal.
3. Mark Kogo, the ‘A’ student who wants to pursue music, medicine
Top KCSE performer Mark Kogo Kipkoech, a former student at Alliance High School who scored a mean of (A plain) with 87.106 points, can not consider picking medicine over music and picking music over medicine. He contemplates whether there’s any nearby university offering such a mix.
“I’ve always thought that medicine would be a very interesting profession to do. I’ve been thinking about it for a long time. I feel that my enjoyment of biology and offering solutions to people’s problems could be a good indicator and the way.
“But also, I like creative things like art, music and literature, so I’m trying to figure out what career path can fit those different interests and then weigh my options from there.” Said Mark Kogo as cited by Nation Africa.
Kogo is resolved to study both at the university level. He concedes that his passion for music is too incredible to even think about dropping. Mark is likewise a member of the Safaricom Orchestra, which he joined in 2019 and has been consistent in his academic performance. He scored 427 marks in his KCPE examinations.
“I’m happy. I didn’t expect it because I was twelfth overall in the last examination at school, but then in the KCSE, I was second in my class. I was hoping for a ‘nice’ A. After every paper, I felt I had given it my best when I left the examination room. I was with my mum and my brother when the results were read, and I was just in shock when my name was mentioned,” said Kipkoech when asked how it feels to be among the top students in the country, by Nations Africa.
Kipkoech says he can play three instruments, the piano, the clarinet and the cello. He learnt piano in primary school when he was in Standard Six and Seven from his tutor. Individuals from the school band taught Kogo the clarinet when he was in Form One. He later picked the cello, which was self-taught a long time before he applied for the orchestra and got a tutor.
“The best part of it was meeting my friends that I’d usually meet at the Music Festivals and made friendships that have lasted to date,” Kogo reveals his experience playing in an orchestra.
Kogo studied music in high school and scored an A. “Music is a private or intimate hobby, but I don’t think it’s something that I’d take pleasure in making my profession because then I fear I might lose the joy of doing it. Just doing it on the side as I pursue other things that interest me would be ideal.” He says.
He advises his fellow students that they should be to be true to themselves. Something he admits he is also striving to do. He likewise tells parents not to restrict what their children could or want to do but should rather uphold their kids.
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