Saturday, February 4, 2017

#Education poor performance in North, East #Uganda on national exams #UCE

One can spin it all they want but the truth still remains that the Museveni government has intentionally impoverished East and North Uganda.  Children cannot study on empty stomachs. Parents cannot afford exorbitant fees for private schools.  Teachers are not paid.  Business is limited so they cannot sell their produce to earn income to educate their children.

The percentage of people who have electricity in these areas alone is very low.  The roads are horrible. The bridges are broken. The hospitals are dilapidated. The government education assistance does not come on time and it is very small.  In fact many of us went to schools in Kampala area even when the region was not impoverished but at that time some wonderful schools still existed.

Meanwhile in Western Uganda and Central Uganda, people have options.  The East and North used to have cooperatives which used to help farmers put their produce on the markets but Museveni killed them all.  It is a miracle that BCU survived. Then remember the joke of Museveni convincing people in the East to uproot all coffee and grow citrus fruits. AND they fell for it. Meanwhile in the East and Central he was giving free seedlings of coffee and tea.  Crops which can be processed and exported. East already had enough mangoes and oranges (mangada included) on Tirinyi road so I have no idea where my people thought they would sell their perishables.

I also blame the sycophants from our region who fell for jobs and money from Museveni and forgot our people.  We are gonna chase you out with him to Rwakitura when he falls soon bayaye mwe.
Martha Leah Nangalama


KAMPALA. Purongo Seed Secondary School, a government-aided school in remote Purongo Sub-county, Nwoya District in northern Uganda, hasn’t had any of its candidates scoring First Grade since 2012.
Of its 39 candidates who sat last year’s UCE exams, which results were released on Tuesday, the school registered two candidates in Second Grade, another 15 in Division Three, and 11 in Division Four.
The school’s laboratory is ill-equipped and its students have only one hour to revise their books in the evening because the school has no access to electricity. More so, its solar panels are weak and can sustain lighting for only one hour.
Mr Janani Loum, the School’s Director of Studies, says the location of the school deep in the village where community members mostly engage in agriculture, has had devastating effects on the performances of students in exams. The poverty, he says, is the greatest challenge they face since most students come from poor families and cannot afford to pay school fees.
“Some of our students were not studying because they didn’t pay fees. But as the exams approached, they returned but it was late and the syllabus had almost been completed. So when it comes to performance, they can’t compete with those who attended classes throughout the year,” he said.
Many schools in northern and eastern Uganda are not any better. Like Purongo Seed Secondary School, most have registered dismal performance in UCE exams over the years.
And true to custom, northern and eastern Uganda registered the worst performance in the 2016 UCE exams whose results were released on Tuesday by Uganda National Examination Board. The regions registered dismal performance in terms of average performance and the number of candidates who scored First Grade.
Apart from Ntoroko District in western Uganda, 10 districts at the bottom of First Grade ranking are from the north and east. They include Zombo with no candidates (0.0%) scoring First Grade, Bukwo (0.2%), Kween (0.3%), Nwoya ( 0.5%), Ntoroko (0.5), Nakapiripirit (0.7%), Bugiri (0.7), Buyende (1.0%), Amolator (1.0%) and Oyam (1.1%).
Top on the list of districts with highest percentage of First Grade are districts from central and western Uganda. For instance, of the 20 districts with the highest percentage of First Grade, only Kotido and Jinja are situated in eastern Uganda and none from northern Uganda. The other top 20 districts by First Grade scores are Mukono, Wakiso, Kampala, Mbarara, Bushenyi, Masaka, Rubirizi, Luweero, Mpigi, Rukungiri, Hoima, Mityana, Sheema, Ibanda, and Rakai.
Statistics indicate that schools from central Uganda are ranked best performers. They include Uganda Martyrs Namugongo, St Mary’s Namagunga, St Mary’s Kitende, Namirembe Hillside, Gayaza High School, The Academy St Lawrence Budo, St Mary’s College Kisubi, Light Academy and King’s College Budo. The schools also dominate the list of students who scored First Grade.
Whereas students and schools from central and western Uganda had most candidates scoring Aggregate 8, eastern and northern Uganda schools had their best candidates scoring Aggregate 20s while Zombe district did not get any First Grade from its 736 candidates who sat for 2016 UCE exams.
For instance, Alebtong’s best performing candidate Emmy Ogingo (Omoro SS) scored Aggregate 27, while Amudat’s best candidate Yatich Joshua Aposia (Pokot SS) scored Aggregate 30, and Amuru’s best student Emmanuel Kinyera (Lacor Seminary) scored Aggregate 24. Yumbe’s best candidate Dramani Amiri (Aringa SS) scored Aggregate 23 while Maracha’s best candidate Henry Yandu (Maracha SS) scored Aggregate 28.
Why poor performance
Mr Barnabas Langoya, the Lamwo District education officer, where only 52 students passed in Division One and in Division Two, said limited technical staff at the various government schools could have greatly impacted on the poor performances. He said in some schools, there are only seven teachers posted by government.
“We have few motorcycles for inspecting schools. At times, they even break down and this affects inspections. We have, however, done everything possible to get good results but we don’t know what went wrong,” Mr Langoya said. He said he will summon all head teachers for a meeting soon to find out what could have gone wrong and address the gaps.
In Pader District, where 166 students passed in Division One and in Division Two, the Acting District Education Officer, Mr Anthony Ojok, on the other hand said the poor performance could be attributed to ill-equipped laboratories in several schools.
“Without good laboratories, a school cannot pass science subjects well, this could be one reason why some schools here didn’t perform well,” he said.
Mr Fagil Mandy, the former Uneb board chairperson, argued that perennial poor performance in PLE is haunts the regions in both the UCE exams and other examinable levels, including at the Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education (UACE), and at universities.
Mr Mandy argued that candidates sitting UCE in these districts cannot express themselves in English, implying they meet challenges when interpreting exam questions. He also blamed the poor quality of teachers in these areas for the poor performance of the students.
Mr Dan Odongo, the Uneb executive secretary, while releasing the 2016 UCE results on Tuesday, said reports from examiners indicate students who performed poorly had low English Language proficiency.
“Difficulties were reported in the use of correct grammar, spellings, tenses and punctuations when writing compositions. Candidates are expected to read a passage and write out a coherent summary of the main issues,” he said.
Mr Odongo also attributed the low performance to poor candidates’ scores in science subjects, especially on questions that require them to draw from their knowledge and experience, draw inferences, and make predictions from a set of data.
Mr Mandy said the ministry of Education has not done much to arrest the perennial problem of poor performance.
“The ministry has not come up with strong measures to stop the poor performance. They keep saying they will build laboratories for the poor-performing schools but even schools with laboratories still perform poorly.”
Dr Mary Goretti Nakabugo, the country coordinator Uwezo, said the poor performance cuts across Uganda. She argued that what is critical is addressing the poor performance in all regions, especially poor performance in science subjects.
“All areas are performing poorly in the sciences. Even in central region there are underperformances in science subjects,” she said.
What ministry says
Mr Benson Baritazale Kule, the commissioner for secondary education, said the poor performance in northern and eastern regions require manpower audit to establish staff distribution in the country. He said government is to recruit teachers and will give priority to schools with low staff manpower.Government has tried to provide schools with laboratory apparatuses and textbooks, but Mr Kule said the schools have not been using the scholastic materials to benefit the students.
“We gave schools equipment and a school without a laboratory can establish a mobile laboratory. They can set up the apparatuses in one of the classrooms and teach students,” he said.“We have distributed textbooks to government secondary schools but they end up in the head teachers’ office. Students are not allowed to borrow the text books; and this is wrong.” Mr Kule said the ministry is set to conduct seminars with stakeholders to sort out areas that need improvement.
Why north, east score poorly in UCE

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