Amidst the COVID-19 era, there was fear that fewer students would manage to register for national examinations

Over one million students register for UNEB exams

Fianalists attending classes at Kololo Secondary School.

Amidst the COVID-19 era, there was fear that fewer students would manage to register for national examinations

The Uganda National Examinations Board (UNEB) has confirmed 1,180,998 candidates have been registered at the Primary Seven, Senior Four, and Senior Six level.

This is a higher number, compared to the 1,138,000 students who registered for the national examinations in 2019.

Even with the disruption of the academic year by the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of candidates has gone up. There are about 43,000 more students who have registered this year, compared to the previous academic year.

Of the registered students, 749,518 are for the Primary Leaving Examinations. There are 333,231 students for the Uganda Certificate of Education and 98,249 students registered for the Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education.

Amidst the COVID-19 era, there was fear that fewer students would manage to register for national examinations.

According to the UNEB executive secretary Dan Odongo, this has certainly been a successful exercise. He says the PLE registered candidates, for instance, have exceeded the projected number of 720,000 candidates.

The high number of students who have registered, Odongo says, is a mark of achievement especially after the schools had closed for six months.

When President ordered the immediate closure of all schools and educational institutions to curb the spread of COVID-19, an estimated 15 million learners in 73,240 institutions and 548,192 teachers were affected.

Breakdown of registered students

Odongo explains that out of the registered PLE candidates, 53 % are females, while 50.3% of the UCE candidates are females. At UACE level, 42% of the registered candidates are females.

Odongo says that UNEB validated and accredited a total of 457 new examination centres. These include 100 centres for both UCE and UACE candidates and 357 for PLE. This brings the total of examination centres to 19,812. Out of these, 13,971 are PLE centres, 3,662 are UCE while the UACE centres are 2,179.

Over one million students register for UNEB exams
UNEB executive secretary Dan Odongo.

Students started registering for the national examinations on October 22 and the process ended on November 30.

According to the final calendar, released by the First Lady and education minister Janet Museveni at the beginning of October, the briefing of students will be on February 26, and the Uganda Certificate of Education examinations will start on March 1, 2021, to April 6, 2021.

The briefing of candidates in Primary Seven will be on March 26 and they will later sit for their examinations on March 30 and March 31, 2021.

The briefing for Senior Six candidates will follow on April 9 and they will sit for examinations from April 12 to May 3, 2021.

The state minister for higher education Dr John Chrysostom Muyingo thanked parents for having paid attention to registration.

“This is a positive step forward in ensuring that we can normalise the learning and assessment process in the country’s education sector, amidst the COVID-19 era,” Muyingo said.

He called upon the parents to check the registers to avoid “Last minute complaints that their children were not registered.”

Follow up

“We have asked schools to display the draft registers and albums to enable candidates to verify their registration data,” Odongo said after the registration of candidates.

“This will go on until the end of the term. In case of any errors, schools can make the necessary amendments. They specifically look out for errors concerning names of candidates – spellings and order of names, photographs of candidates to ensure they are not mismatched, gender, date and year of birth, funding code, candidates’ institutional choices and subjects of choice,” he added.

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