Published weekly by the Media Council of Kenya

To the Editor
Pen Cop
Off The Beat
Media Review
Media Monitoring
Literary Vignettes
Letter to the Editor
Guest Column
Fact Checking
Fact Check
Editor's Pick
EAC Media Review
Council Brief
Book Review
Edit Template

KCSE and journalism’s foresight role in tackling challenges ahead

  1. Media obsession with “best schools”

The so-called best schools are expected to be that way, since our secondary school admission selection criteria for national and county schools is configured in such a way that those with high grades join the already well-equipped, well-managed schools. The county and subcounty ones are left to admit students with lower grades.

This has entrenched the notion that schools that admit higher performers in national exams are “best schools” or “best performing schools.”

The media is thus to blame for turning a blind eye on this matter: By failing to ask the examining body, if these so-called top schools had the best improved “margin performance”, or it’s probably others not even known to the media.

The way the media addresses this issue has the potential to discourage learners, who at the beginning of their learning process may perceive themselves as disadvantaged, even if the poor performance at KCPE was influenced by external factors such as inter-community conflicts, which might not affect them any more during their learning in high school.

Consequently, we should see media focus on the most improved school, candidate, girl child, boy child, etcetera.

We expected that journalism would narrow down to analysing the schools in remote and hardship areas and factors that influenced their learning process, and performance. Look at their challenges and possible solutions.

  1. Interrogating grade E

The KCSE 2023 results showed a significant number of candidates scored grade E, with examining body putting boys as more affected at 28,214 than girls at 19,960 candidates.

Little attention is paid to these “poor” learners, probably because of a generality that if you scored an E grade you are a poor learner. But interviewing them would help to unravel what could be going on in our education system. There has been a general outcry about the boy child being neglected. Could this high figure be a revelation of how things are at the grassroots?

What about the girl child, is she still equally empowered per national location? These are important issues journalists should interrogate as ignoring them could cover up a problem that could expand into a bigger crisis.

Further, are these young Kenyans really what they have been “condemned” to be  or, is it the system which probably decided to expose them negatively by only categorising them by an exam that focuses on their “performance weakness” in academic circles?

For example, experience has shown how less academically endowed learners are better in technical abilities such as innovation, technology and sports.

Since journalism is about looking beyond where contemporary thinking has reached and using insights gained to draw criticism and analysis, addressing all those grey areas will play a key role in changing the way our educators have so far viewed learning in our country.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Share this post

Sign up for the Media Observer

Weekly Newsletter

By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Policy

Scroll to Top