Private schools in the Rift Valley have continued to produce top candidates in this year's Kenya Certificate of Primary Education exam.
Jesere Toigat topped at Moi Primary School Kabarak with 425 points, followed by Victor Lemiso (424 points) and Whitney Nafula (417 points).
Moi Primary School Kabarak was among the top schools, with a mean of 382 points.
Nelson Kiptoo, the school's principal, said despite the hectic academic schedule, the students performed admirably.
"We had been working on a very tight calendar that allowed for four terms per year. It took a lot of effort and teamwork to complete the syllabus on time and prepare for the exams. We are overjoyed with our excellent results," Kiptoo said.
The school, which had 254 candidates, produced 79 who scored more than 400 points.
"The open secret was hard work, teamwork, and passion," he continued.
Jesere attributed her success to input from teachers and parents who assisted her in preparing for exams during the hectic academic calendar.
"The teachers worked extremely hard to get us to where we are now. They formed a strong team with our parents, and they continually encouraged us," she said.
She said while she has not decided on a career, she would like to work in a field that involves making people's lives better.
"I'm still weighing so many options for a career path, but I know it will involve helping others and making lives better," she said.
Daisy Toigat, Jesere's mother, attributed the success to discipline and teamwork.
Teachers at Sun and Shield School in Nakuru attributed their success, which included a mean score of 380.13, to sacrifice and teamwork.
Shanna Jelagat was the top candidate in the school, with 423 points, followed by Lynne Mugure with 421 points and Lewis Lenana with 417 points.
Brigid Kandie Shivachi, the school's principal, said 18 students received more than 400 points.
"Despite the fact that the academic calendar was reduced to six months, our candidates performed admirably. We attribute our success to perseverance and collaboration. We could not have done it without the help of everyone," Shivachi said.
The average score at Mogotio Little Friends Academy in Baringo County was 393.01. The school had 84 applicants. Gloria Kiprono topped the class with 425 points.
Mcramsey Lijodi was the top student at Kagaki School with 418 points. She wants to be a pilot.
"With enough time and effort, anything is possible. I am overjoyed to be ranked among the top students today. I know that if I keep working hard, I will be able to fulfil my dream of becoming a pilot because I have always been fascinated by aeroplanes," Lijodi said.
Cyrus Malanda, the school's principal, said it took a lot of patience and hard work from teachers and candidates to achieve good results and a mean grade of 367.
Sharon Jepchumba and Cedric Ejikon of Kapsabet Highlands School in Nandi took first place with 425 points.
Students and parents flocked to the private school on the Kapsabet-Eldoret highway yesterday to celebrate the good performance announced by Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Mochogu.
Jepchumba, 15, attributed her excellent performance to hard work and stated that she did not expect to receive such high marks.
"Becoming a neurosurgeon is my dream. I'm relieved to have received such high marks. I'm excited to study abroad so that I can return to serve my community in the health sector," she said.
Some 39 students at Kapsabet Highlands School scored more than 400 points out of a possible 500.
Titiana Chamma received 425 points, Nadia Cheptoo received 423 points, Gloria Lerato received 421 points, and Allan Kimutai received 420 points.
Viola Kimaru, the school's director, said: "We thank God for the positive outcomes. This was the result of our students' and teachers' hard work, as well as the school's administration's consistent vision of educational excellence."
Bishop Alexander Muge Primary School continued its tradition of outperforming top public schools in Nandi county. Nicolas Kiprotich, the school's top student, scored 424 points, while Jepkoech Nicol scored 422 points.
According to the school's principal, Samuel Sawe, 44 of the 113 registered students scored more than 400. The average score at the school was 393.
St Lukes Biribiriet Primary School had a mean KCPE score of 397, with more than 30 candidates scoring above 400.