KNEC Faces Accusations of Reusing 60% of KCPE and KCSE Exam Questions

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The Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC) has come under scrutiny for allegedly reusing 60% of questions from past Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) and Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) exams.

Dr. Purity Ngina of the Zizi Afrique Foundation has raised concerns about the impact of this practice on exam integrity.

The Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC) is facing allegations of reusing a substantial portion, approximately 60%, of questions from previous Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) and Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) exams, stirring concerns over the integrity of these examinations. Dr. Purity Ngina from the Zizi Afrique Foundation has voiced these concerns and emphasized the need for accountability.

Dr. Ngina noted that a significant portion of questions in KCPE and KCSE exams appears to be recycled from previous years, providing an advantage to schools that invest in analyzing and memorizing these questions. However, she expressed concerns about the potential for similar answers to emerge, raising questions about the authenticity of students’ achievements.

During a conference attended by assessment bodies in Africa, it was revealed that questions in Kenyan exams were not only repeated but also appeared in the same positions, indicating a lack of diversity in question setting.

Dr. Ngina argued that KNEC’s failure to introduce higher-level thinking questions allows students to memorize answers to recycled questions and may create a false impression of their abilities. She emphasized the need for exams to include questions that require critical thinking.

In light of these allegations, Tinderet MP Julius Meli has called for the Kenya National Qualifications Authority (KNQA) to oversee KNEC and conduct annual audits of the examination process to ensure transparency and integrity.

The KCPE and Kenya Primary School Education Assessment (KPSEA) exams are scheduled to begin this week, while the KCSE exams will start later this month, according to KNEC’s official calendar.

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