Education CS Prof George Magoha has cautioned parents against giving exam candidates any special foods during the exam period, warning that many promising careers have been cut short by unstable stomachs in the exam rooms.
Citing the dangerous tendency to bribe candidates to pass exams with food, Magoha said that many times the practice had resulted in the opposite, where candidates are unable to concentrate either due to excitement or stomach upsets.
“I remember during my time I just ate the usual food and I made it to Starehe Boys Center, something more prestigious than Alliance. One student who was provided with Chapati and Beef stew never made it even to the local polytechnic. Special food is a scam.”
While special diets may affect the physical wellbeing of students, there are other unintended consequences that may affect the actual performance of students.
In 2019, it was reported that a student who had enjoyed baked beans in the morning made everyone fail the Chemistry practical in one school. While one experiment was supposed to result to a colorless and odorless gas, one student with a bloated stomach farted and everyone thought the experiment resulted in a gas with pungent odour. There was mass failure at the school and several people who would have become doctors had their career cut short after failing the Chemistry paper.
Magoha also reiterated that the 2021 KCSE results will be announced before the end of marking as a sign of efficiency in the Ministry of Education. “We are set to announce the results as soon as the first paper is done. We could do it earlier but that might undermine the credibility of the whole process. A few As at Kenya High school, get girls to perform better than boys in languages and give the best student in Garissa a C+. It is not rocket science.”