Shofco-run low-cost schools in Kibra, Mathare post stellar performance in KCPE » Capital News

NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 25 — Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO) schools in Kibera and Mathare slums posted outstanding performances of 100 percent pass mark in the 2023 Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) results released Thursday by Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC).

SHOFCO’s Kibera School for Girls returned a mean score of 371 marks while its sister school in Mathare posted a mean score of 362 marks even as the country marked the end of 8-4-4 to pave way for the the Competency Based Curriculum.

Both the Kibera and Mathare schools had a 100 percent pass rate. KSG had 37 candidates with the least performer scoring 268 while the least performer in Mathare’s 33 candidates scored 291 marks.

The mean score for Kibera School for Girls known simply as KSG, the highest marks scored since 2017 when the school candidates sat for the national exam for the first time.

This year, six learners from KSG and four learners from Mathare scored upwards of 400 marks out of the possible 500. 

KSG was started in a mud walled classroom with a handful of students as part of SHOFCO’s founder Dr. Kennedy Odede dream and belief that empowering girls and women as change leaders would create sustainable change at the community level.

KSG’s Cynthia Atieno Odhiambo and her counterparts from the sister school in Mathare Jessica Rehema and Sophia Atieno were joint best candidates with each of them scoring 414 out of the possible 500.

The 15-year-old Cynthia who was registered as index 8 says she was surprised when she heard that she had scored 414 marks.

”I was expecting to score 390 marks and above. However, I was surprised when I learned that I am the top KSG student in KCPE,” she said

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She says her outstanding performance was a result of concentration in class, believing in herself that she can, and support from the teachers.

”The teachers were very supportive. When you went to them with a challenging question, they didn’t turn their back. They made sure that we     you’re help you out.” Cynthia Atieno lauded KSG teachers support

Cynthia has been working tirelessly in her studies to score good marks that qualifies her to join Alliance Girls High School or Kenya High. Her dream is to pursue an entrepreneurship course in the university to invent something unique that someone has never invented.

”My dream is to start a business of my own, and invent something that someone has never invented ”

The girls thanked Shofco Founder and CEO Dr. Kennedy Odede for supporting them in their academic journey, and promised to continue making him proud in high school.

“Shofco ensured that we lacked nothing during our studies. It was God-send to me because I knew my parents could not afford to pay my school fees. May God bless our CEO for holding our hands and ensured that we studied without any challenges,” Sophia said.

Hope Atieno Onyango is another KSG candidate who shined in the released KCPE exams. Despite the health problem that she has been having since when she was in grade 6, Hope managed to beat the odds for becoming the second best Kibera School for Girls in KCPE for garnering 408 marks.

Hope is one of the pupils at KSG who has been consistent in her performance despite having health issues. She has been scoring 400 and above marks in the school internal exams and even external examinations.

”My academic journey has been great despite ups and downs. I have been working hard to maintain my performance.” says Hope.

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She says she weak in Mathematics and Kiswahili when she joined grade 8. But her teachers support came in handy helping her to score straight A’s in both subjects.

“The teachers were very supportive, whenever I needed help, they were there to assist me.” KSG second best student in 2023 KCPE,” she says.

The teachers were not only concerned with Hope Atieno’s academic performance, they were also concerned with her health.

Hope who has just turned 15 says a brain surgery has inspired her interest in pursuing a neurosurgeon career when she graduates from high school.

”When I went through a brain surgery at grade 6, a plate was extracted from the left side of my brain. Since that time I have been having frequent headache and my left limb has also weakened,” says Hope

She says that she learnt that there are few neurosurgeons in Kenya during the brain surgery journey.

Hope who has been under SHOFCO support since 2014 when she joined KSG is grateful for the support she has received from the organization.

”I don’t know where I would have been right now. SHOFCO helped my parents in educating me and I am forever grateful for the organisation’s belief in me”

KSG’s head teacher Redempta Kinyaka hailed SHOFCO KSG fraternity for the splending relentless effort put in the 2023 candidates.

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According to KSG class eight tutor, Victor Rono, the girl’s performance was below target when they girls joined class eight forcing the teachers to come up with strategies to improve the learners’ performance.

One of the strategies KSG adopted was to accommodate the girls in school.

“Having them board gave us opportunity to teach them from 5:00am in the morning to 9:00pm in the evening,” says Rono.

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