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First school test under CBC starts next week

EDUCATION
By Augustine Oduor | March 3rd 2021

Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec) acting CEO Mercy Karogo. [File, Standard]

The first school-based assessment for Grade 4 learners starts next Monday, the Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec) has announced.

This is the pioneer class of the 2-6-3-3-3 education system under the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC).

The tests, to be administered and marked by teachers, will constitute 20 marks as broadly recommended by the CBC task force under the formative assessments plan.

This is the clearest indication that the government is keen to phase out the age-old 8-4-4 system as the implementation of proposals put forward by the CBC task force starts.

The Ministry of Education has already initiated plans to review secondary school selection choices for present Standard Eight candidates, with a major focus on nearby day schools.

This was also a task force recommendation for the adoption of day schooling as a strategy for reducing the high cost of education.

And now, the school-based assessments, which was also proposed by the team, will be rolled out next week, effectively ushering in a new dawn in assessments in schools under the Competency-Based Assessments (CBA).

Overall, the team proposed the administration of national examinations at Grade Six, Nine and 12.

For the school-based assessments starting next week, Knec acting Chief Executive Officer Mercy Karogo said both regular (age-based) and stage-based (special needs) learners will be assessed. The learners will sit two other school-based assessments in Grade Five next year and Grade Six in 2023. Cumulatively, the school-based assessments will constitute 60 per cent.

The learners will then sit one final national examination, set and administered by Knec, which will constitute 40 per cent.

Karogo said the council will send assessment tools to schools for teachers to use.

“Knec will develop the School Based Assessment (SBA) tools and upload them. Schools will download, administer and score the SBA tools,” she said.

The marks will be uploaded on the Knec portal thereafter.

“In this regard, schools are expected to submit assessment outcomes of learners who are currently in Grade 4 to the Knec, which will contribute 20 per cent of the final Grade Six assessment,” said Karogo in guidelines dated March 1.

However, in future, Knec says, the 20 per cent will be shared between class assessment and school-based assessments, with each contributing 10 per cent.

Guidelines released by Knec yesterday show that the planned assessments will be administered from Monday next week.

“Schools are therefore expected to download and administer the assessment tools, score and upload the Grade 4 learners assessment scores on the Knec Competency Based Assessment portal between March 8 and 19,” said Karogo.

The guideline reveals that learners at the intermediate level of the stage-based curriculum pathway will also be assessed for the purposes of tracking their progress to inform their transition to pre-vocational level.

For the regular learners, mathematics, English, Kiswahili, Kenyan sign language, science and technology, music and arts and craft will be assessed.

Also to be assessed for this category of learners are social studies, Christian Religious Education, Islamic Religious Education, Hindu Religious Education, home science and physical and health education.

And for the special needs education learners, the teachers will administer assessments on communication, daily living skills, social and religious education, numeracy, creative, environmental, and psychomotor activities and sensory motor integration.

In the advisory, Karogo asked teachers to use readily available material for assessments.

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