The Presidential Working Party on Education Reforms (PWPER) has proposed a major deviation from the initial plan by proposing to retain KNEC Exams under the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC).
As a result, competition for high marks on national exams among students would persist, just as it does now under the 8-4-4 system.
In response to public concern, the PWPER has proposed a draft report that proposes reducing the amount of courses studied under the CBC. In addition, the proposed split between school-based and national examinations, previously set at 60% in favor of the former, would be reversed.
Students in primary schools will now be expected to aim for a score of at least 60% on the Grade 9 national examinations and no lower than 40% on school-based assessments. This reversal effectively negates the initial intention of reducing pressure on national examinations under the CBC.
Students in high school (Grade 12) will face a similar situation, with national exams accounting for 70% of their final grade and school assessments accounting for 30%.
Learners’ eligibility for junior secondary school is not determined by their performance on the Kenya Primary School Education Assessment, which is administered at the end of primary school (grade 6).
The team has proposed rebranding the Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC) as the Kenya National Assessment Council (KNAC) in order to better reflect the agency’s function in administering final exams at the junior and senior secondary levels under CBC.
Under the 8-4-4 system, learners will take a culminating exam in Grade 9 that is quite comparable to the KCPE. This test, nevertheless, will count for 60% of their overall grade, with the remaining 40% derived from tests taken at the end of both grade 7 and 8.
The final exam will now count for 60% of their grade, up from 40% under the old system, with classroom assessments accounting for the remaining 20%. This change will have a significant impact on whether or not they are admitted to senior secondary school.
Similarly, at the end of secondary school (Grade 12), pupils will take a summative exam very similar to the KCSE that will account for 70% of their final grade.
School-based assessments and competencies will account for the remaining 30%.