As observed last year during the release of the 2013 examination, candidature in the KCPE examination continues to grow steadily. It is therefore gratifying to note that candidature increased from 839,759 candidates in the year 2013 to 880,486 candidates in the year 2014, a candidature increase of 40,727 candidates representing a 4.85% increase. Of the 880,486 candidates who sat for the 2014 KCPE examination, 437,288 were girls, while 443,258 were boys, representing a gender parity of 49.7 % girls: 50.3 % boys. This clearly shows that we are almost attaining equal gender parity for the KCPE examination.
The number of girls who sat for the examination increased from 413,390 in the year 2013 to 437,228 in the year 2014, an increase of 23,838 girls, representing 5.77%, while the boys increased from 426,369 in the year 2013 to 443,258 in 2014, an increase of 16,889 boys, representing 3.96%. while it is commendable that the increase in the number of girls was higher than that of boys in the year 2014 KCPE examination, analysis of candidature trends by gender in the last five years indicates that the percentage increase in the number of girls has consistently been higher than that of boys during this period, a trend which in the near future may lead to more girls sitting for the examination when compared to boys.
On analysis of candidature trends by gender at County level, it was noted that in the year 2013 KCPE examination, 18 out of the total 47 counties, had more girls than boys who sat for the KCPE examination. In the year 2014 KCPE examination, the number of counties that had more girls than boys who sat for the 2014 KCPE examination increased to 23 counties. These counties were: Taita Taveta, Nyandarua , Kirinyaga, Kiambu, Machakos, Kitui, Embu, Meru, Makueni, Tharaka Nithi, Nairobi, Trans Nzoia, Uasin Gishu, Nakuru, Kericho, Nandi, Elgeyo Marakwet, Bungoma, Kakamega, Vihiga, Kisii, Siaya and Nyamira. While we have put and continue to put interventions in place to ensure that the girl-child remain in school, we must not lose sight of the factors that may be hindering the boy child form completing.