A major crackdown on examination theft rings has been launched with more than two dozen teachers interdicted and exam cheating hot spots put under watch.
Principals of schools whose candidates had their Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) results cancelled last year have been sent home in a move aimed at keeping exam cheating cartels away ahead of the start of national examinations in October.
According to a report by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC), 26 principals, supervisors and invigilators have been interdictedin the last two weeks. The whip was cracked after TSC fast-tracked discipline cases of heads of schools where 1,200 candidates had their results cancelled last year.
The TSC report shows six of those interdicted are principals of secondary schools that accounted for a large part of the cancellations, with 1,022 candidates affected.
Four others were supervisors in those schools while 13 were invigilators.
The details are contained in the KCSE Exam Irregularities 2017 Status Report On Teachers interdicted. It’s dated June 20, 2018.
The Saturday Standard confirmed that all the teachers were served with their interdiction letters through their respective TSC county directors.
TSC Chief Executive Officer Nancy Macharia announced last month that 60 teachers faced interdiction over the 2017 KCSE national examinations irregularities.
The disciplinary process is expected to end and actions taken before October.
The development comes as the Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec) identified cheating hot spots across the country.
It also comes as the Ministry of Education launched this year’s monitoring exercise ahead of the tests in October.
Several schools in Nyanza, North Eastern, Coast and Western have been identified and will be put under heavy surveillance.
Also under close watch by Knec are schools in Nairobi, Eastern and Central regions.
Sources at Knec familiar with security operations revealed that some institutions have been collecting unexplained money and are being watched keenly.
Other schools have also set up command centres where exam papers will be sneaked in and worked out as students write the tests.
“This time around, there will never be early exposure because we have put the schools on the radar and intelligence shows each step taken by these players,” said a senior ministry official who declined to be named because of sensitivity of the examinations. Some 1.7 million candidates have been registered to sit the examinations. Of these, 1,060,703 will sit KCPE, with 664,585 sitting KCSE.
KCPE examinations will be done at 27,161 centres while 10,077 centres will host KCSE candidates.
Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohammed said last month that investigations have shown that cases of exam irregularities arise out of conduct by a few unprofessional teachers and exam officials who colluded with students to sneak materials into examination rooms.
“To stamp out cheating, principals who are appointed as centre managers must rise to the occasion and provide leadership in the administration of examinations,” said Mohammed.
Speaking in Nandi when she inspected examination containers, Mohammed said that moving forward, officials involved in malpractices would be sent home.
Knec chairperson Prof George Magoha announced last month that additional 40 containers had been procured and installed, bringing to 459 the total number of strong safes.
Knec Chief Executive Officer Mercy Karogo said preparations of the administration activities were underway and cautioned principals, students and parents against cheating.
Finer details of the crackdown reveals that at Chebyusi Secondary School, the principal, Boniface Okoth, and two Chemistry teachers, Makokha Arnelico, and Anthony Wekesa, have been interdicted.
Results of 190 candidates were cancelled at the school following collusion during Biology Paper 1 (231/1) and Chemistry Paper 3 (233/3).
In Makueni, Barazani Girls School former Principal Annah Wanee Wambua (currently principal Kyondoni Secondary School in Kitui), has been interdicted over collusion during Chemistry Paper 3 (233/3) that led to cancellation of results for 96 candidates at the centre.
A supervisor, Erickson Ndeti Mutua, and Chemistry teacher, Jane Mutheu Kandi, have been interdicted.
In Kisii County, the principal of Mokubo Secondary School, Matongo Mobert Albert, and the supervisor, George M Nyaundi, have been interdicted.
The deputy principal Solomon Mose, and the curriculum support officer (Magena/Emesa zone), Kepha Omoro, have been warned for negligence of duty. All the 10 invigilators have also been warned for negligence of duty.
There was massive collusion during English Paper 2 (101/2) and Chemistry Paper 3 (233/3) leading to cancellation of results for 204 candidates at the centre. At Chalbi Boys High School in Marsabit County, the principal, Boya Paul Halake, has been interdicted for negligence of duty.
The supervisor, Woto B Barako, has been interdicted for colluding with the principal and invigilators to allocate extra time.
The four invigilators have all been warned. There was massive collusion during English Paper 2 (101/2) and Physics Paper 1 (232/1) leading to cancellation of results for 70 candidates at the centre.
At St Cecilia Girls Secondary School in West Pokot, nine invigilators have been warned administratively for not being vigilant.
“Students managed to talk to each other, receive assistance from each other and had unauthorised material in the form of tissue paper in the examination room, which they used to circulate the responses among themselves,” the report says.
There was massive collusion during English Paper 2 (101/2) and Physics paper 1 (232/1) leading to cancellation of results for 162 candidates at the centre.
Additionally, two deputy centre managers, two supervisors and 16 invigilators, received warning letters over negligence of duty.
Knec investigations have revealed that there was massive collusion during English Paper 2 (101/2), Biology Paper 2 (231/2) and Physics Paper 1 (232/1) leading to cancellation of results for 320 candidates at the centre.
Do not miss out on the latest news. Join the Standard Digital Telegram channel HERE.