Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha has lauded his predecessors – Interior CS Dr Fred Matiang’i and Sports CS Amina Mohamed – for being at the forefront to ensure national exams reforms in schools.
Prof Magoha, who spoke while releasing the 2021 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examination results in Nairobi on Saturday, said the reforms in the administration of the exams have been possible because of the foundation laid by CS Amina and Dr Matiang’i.
“I positively recognise and acknowledge Dr Matiang’i for the key role he played in initiating the examination reforms and for the role he continues to play in the security sector to support these reforms,” said Prof Magoha.
He added: “And for CS Amina, the role she has also played in the implementation of the reforms in the Ministry of Education cannot go unrecognised.”
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Dr Matiang’i was lauded as the face behind the national examination reforms that restored credibility in assessments.
Further, he instituted reforms at the Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC). Under Dr Matiangi’s leadership, Knec also tightened examination rules. He is also credited for appointing Dr Magoha to chair the Knec Council, a move that saw positive changes.
Among the reforms include banning non-academic activities in schools during the third term to allow candidates to concentrate on examinations.
Prof Magoha also noted that the former Interior CS, the late Joseph Nkaissery, also played a critical role in the reforms.“His partnership with us, as well as the ICT minister Mr Joe Mucheru, was critical in ensuring exams were secured and delivered on time,” Prof Magoha said. Mr Mucheru, according to Prof Magoha, has been critical in advancing and adopting technology in national examinations administration.
His role has ensured that technology is applied in the administration of the national examinations.
His vast experience in ICT has facilitated the smooth running of the national examinations and prompt response to the related crises.
Prof Magoha also lauded former Education Principal Secretary, Dr Belio Kipsang for contributing immensely to the reforms. Mr Kipsang, having worked at the Ministry of Education longer than the senior staff, held the institutional memory and offered critical advice in the general administration of the examinations.
During the examinations reforms, Dr Kipsang, oversaw the reorganisation of the school calendar and instituted far-reaching changes in the administration of national examinations.
Also recognised was Dr Mercy Karogo who, until her retirement last year, was Knec’s acting chief executive officer.
“Her leadership at Knec led to the successful implementation of the reforms during her tenure. During her time, she oversaw all the operations at the head office, including receiving scripts and the marking process”, said Prof Magoha.
She was instrumental in ensuring all the feedback from the field are addressed immediately and reported to the Knec board.
He also applauded Ministry officials who have been involved in the monitoring of examinations.
Teachers Service Commission (TSC) chief executive, Dr Nancy Macharia, was also recognised for consistently ensuring the Commission rallied behind the reforms.
Dr Macharia has been responsible for the daily running of the commission and supervising the staff of the TSC. She facilitates, coordinates and ensures the execution of the Commission’s mandate and performs other duties as may be assigned by the Commission.
During the examination process, about 300,000 teachers under her supervision participate in the smooth administration of the examinations.
Her role has been to ensure teachers, who are at the centre of the administration of examinations, are available and professionally sound to execute their mandate.
She has been the critical link between teachers and the Ministry and is always handy during top decision-making processes that touch on teachers.
“I salute the efforts of this incredible team in delivering credible examinations for our children. Their efforts and contributions will remain a key part of the history of our country forever,” said Prof Magoha.
And to the CS who will succeed him, Prof Magoha said: “ I would wish to tell them; don’t drop the ball. Safeguard the integrity of our national examinations. They must keep intact the trajectory of the examination reforms that we have put in place.”