Chewoyet High School situated about four kilometres from Kapenguria town, in West Pokot County, is as old as Kenya’s history.
It was among the first two premier government secondary schools in the North Rift, the other was Kapsabet Boys.
The school, sitting on 400 acres and earlier known as the Rift Valley Junior Secondary School, was first an agriculture college in the 1940’s.
In the late 1950’s selected students from across the country converged at the current Kitale Post Office. Here, a lorry waited for a 40-kilometre rough ride, along the Kitale-Kapenguria Road, to the school that later became famous as the colonial court where the Mzee Jomo Kenyatta and the Kapenguria Six were tried on April 8, 1953.
The old courtroom buildings have been converted into a staff room, an administration block and a classroom for Form Three students.
Notable alumni of the school — that was elevated to a national school in 2012 — include; former Vice President the late Kijana Wamalwa, the first school captain and his brother, Eugene Wamalwa the designate Water and Irrigation Cabinet Secretary, former Chief of the General Staff Daudi Tonje, former Nairobi Town Clerk John Gakuo, Education PS Dr Bellio Kipsang and the late Rift Valley PC Ishmail Chelang’a.
Others guided by the motto Virtus Et Probitus (Latin for Virtue and Honesty) are former Sigor MP Wilson Litole, former Prison Commissioners Abraham Kamakil and Edward Lopokoit, Kitale ACK Bishop Stephen Kewasis, Milimani courts Senior Principal Magistrate Linus Limatiang and Atinga John Ernest Oluoch, associate professor, orthopaedic and traumatology, University of Nairobi-School of Medicine.