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Dr Fred Matiang’i, Education CS (left) greets Nicholas Nyagah during a school event at Nkubu High School last December. Photo/Titus Murithi

Principal who tackled exam cheating years before Matiang’i

By Titus Murithi
The new Kathiani High School Principal,
Mr. Nicholas Nyagah who was
transferred from Nkubu High School
in the recent TSC transfers can be credited
as a school administrator who unflinchingly
fought against exam cheating during his tenure
at Nkubu High School for the past seven
years.
In one incident during the final exams
at Nkubu, Mr. Nyagah with help of another
teacher caught four students with phones
while in the examination room. Although
these students were arrested, they were later
released in unclear circumstances although
their end results were cancelled.
While talking to Education News recently
in Meru town, Mr. Nyagah lauded
the education CS Dr. Fred Matiang’i for his
ruthless fight against exam cheating.
He requested the Education CS to conduct
a forensic audit on at least 20 National
Schools in Kenya that have been posting
high grades in national examinations for the
past 10 years, to determine whether or not
these results were genuine.
“Matiang’i is the best Education CS Kenya
has ever had. His ruthless crackdown on
exam cheating was long overdue. The measures
he has taken should have been in place
more than 10 years ago. A few of us have
tried to fight exam cheating before but our
efforts were in vain. This is because the vice
was rampant and deeply rooted in the education
system, run by a network of cartels as
the CS has been saying,” said Nyagah.
He added that in the Nkubu incident
where four students in possession of mobile
phones which had exam answers were arrested
and later released, it was his swift action
which prevented results for the entire school
being cancelled.
“Schools which involve themselves
in exam cheating so that their students can
score high grades are putting this Country
in great jeopardy. Such students proceed to
high level courses at the university and end
up as half-baked professionals while others
drop out altogether after failing to pass the
rigorous training they enrolled for,” said
Nyagah.
He said he could openly talk against
exam cheating during social gatherings
with fellow principals, and during one official
principals meetings in Meru School, he
openly talked about it, and noted his fight
against exam cheating which made him
very unpopular among some of his fellow
principals.
Nyagah singles out Nkubu, St. Mary’s
Girls, Igoji and Nkuene Girls as among
those which have not been involved in
exam cheating in Meru County. He pays
glowing tribute to Ambaka Kiringa, former
Meru County TSC Director for his spirited
fight to dismantle exam cheat cartels. Kiringa
did not waste any opportunity to speak
openly about the vice when meeting with
principals, Headteachers or education officials.
He said some principals deserve rewards
from parents.

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