SIR â€” A lot has been said about UNEBâ€™s decision not to release the list of the best performing candidates and schools in national examinations.
it may not be realised by some that UNEB stopped releasing the best performing schoolsâ€™ list in order of merit, way back in 1996, giving the same reason that it used to encourage cheating among schools.
Since then the list UNEB has been releasing has been that of individual candidates and has nothing to do with schools' performance.
UNEB used to release both lists of the best schools and candidates at national and not district level, like it is still done in countries like Kenya.
In 1996 some of us were not amused by UNEBâ€™s decision to retain the list of only the best perfoming candidates.
This has all along confused stakeholders especially parents mistakening it to be that of the best schools as well, which is not the case.
For example, consider school â€˜Aâ€™ which may have one or two exceptionally brilliant candidates making UNEB's list of best performers whereas its overall or average performance may not be all that impressive.
On the other hand, school â€˜Bâ€™ whose pupils all happen to pass in first grade may not be listed anywhere for having none of them on a districtâ€™s top performers.
I know of a primary school in a remote area of Lubaga division whose PLE results for the last three years have recorded nothing but first grades only, yet you will never see it anywhere in the papers!
Surely, if UNEB had released the list of the best performing candidates this year, schools like Kampala Parents would have their pupils covering the front pages of our newspapers and not many of the better performing ones from upcountry areas.
Look at this: Kampala Parents School had 181 of its 199 pupils passing in first grade and 23 of them scoring aggregate 4 while Bright Grammar school
in Masaka recorded a 100 percent first grade performance by not only having all its 116 pupils getting first grade but 24 of them earning
So, which of the two schools performed better? This is the reason I commend UNEB for bringing to an end all this confusion.
Despite this, however the examination body should be reminded that it is Ugandansâ€™ right to know both the best performing schools and candidates nationwide.
If other examinations bodies like KNEC in Kenya have done it year after year while at the same time successfully curbing examination malpractices,why can't we do it here?
Instead a lasting remedy to examination malpractices must be sought rather than deny schools and individual candidates recognition which they deserve for good performance.
UNEBâ€™s decision both good and bad