By Dennis Bett.
Kapkenda Girls High School in Elgeyo Marakwet County has since inception in 1964 steadily evolved to become reputable Centre of Excellence to reckon with in Marakwet County that has produced academic giants among its alumni.
The premier girls’ school has produced prominent personalities among them world renowned women leaders including Elgeyo Marakwet County Women Representative, Dr. Susan Chebet, the County Education Board Chairperson, Prof. Margret Kamar, High Court Advocate, Mrs. Ledisha Kitony to mention but a few.
Since the Principal, Mrs. Jemimah Suleiman Sambay joined the institution in 2013, its performance has seen a steady rise in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations.
The school’s mean grade of 8.0 in 2013 managed to improve to 8.9 in 2015. She attributed the impressive results to teamwork of both parents, guardians, students, teachers, subordinate staff and stakeholders.
In 2016 KCSE exam results, the school will send 136 of its students to university.
The school aims at a mean of 9.0 in 2017 KCSE examinations with adequate plans in place.
Speaking exclusively to Education News in her office recently, Mrs Sambay said she is proud of the school for having lived up to its reputation of producing whole-rounded academic giants who can endure, conquer and emerge victorious in all spheres globally.
Mrs Sambai said teachers and subordinate staff are very committed and cooperative in ensuring that the students produce the best results.
She added that the school is child-friendly having professional and its students eat a well-balanced diet, thus promoting healthy living for excellent performance.
“We also support our students in subjects like Mathematics through contests and partnering with well performing schools like Sacho High School, Loreto Limuru and Turbo Girls, Sing’ore girls, Saint Patrick’s High Iten among others,” she added.
“We award students who do well in mathematics, Physics and Chemistry,” she said, noting that motivation is a key factor to success.
During last year’s drama fete, the school led all way up to national level.
“We value self-reliance, that is why our normal learning culture is backed up by lots of activities which are encouraging our girls to stand up and fight for their rights,” the Principal said, adding that global events such as Mother’s Day and Father’s Day are on their calendar.
She noted that such events have brought positive results since they give parents a chance to play a role in shaping the destiny of their children.
The Principal told Education News that the sub-county school is also running a programme dubbed ‘Tumdo Nelel’, an alternative rite of passage for girls and women who have remained vulnerable to the fatal and ancient Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).
“Tumdo Nelel is a noble initiative from one of the school alumni and a leader, Dr. Susan Chebet. The programme has helped in shaping values and customs in the current society,” explained Mrs. Sambay.
The Principal attended the just concluded Regional Parliamentary Conference on Anti-FGM held in Nairobi.
The Principal noted that the girl school excels in both academic and co-curricular activities guided by the school Motto: ‘Bidii Huleta Ushindi’, a Kiswahili phrase meaning ‘hard work brings victory.’
The Deputy Principal, Mrs. Carol Odemo affirmed that the school is committed to putting up key infrastructural facilities to enhance both academic and curricular activities.
She said other programmes in place include Basket Sunday, an event normally staged on the second Sunday of every term, where the Kapkenda school fraternity together with other stakeholders pool resources and funds to aid needy students in the school.
Odemo said this has helped minimize absenteeism which has remained a costly factor that leads to failure in many schools.
“Like immersing a fingerling inside water, the school has helped nurture talents, conducted career talks, as well as staging cultural days which have contributed to the school’s academic excellence,” she added.