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Over 52,000 Students Not Planned for in Senior One Placements

According to the education ministry, the lists that are used during selection are generated by a computer system that determines where candidates will go depending on their performance and where they placed their choices. However in some cases, some students who do not make good choices end up not having anywhere to go.
According to the education ministry, the students missing on the selection papers normally make wrong choices

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More than 52,000 students who sat for Primary Leaving Examinations in 2019 have not been planned for during the ongoing Senior One selection exercise at the Uganda Manufacturer's Association conference hall.

According to the Uganda National Examinations Board, 683,303 candidates sat for P.L.E in 2019. Out of the number that sat, 617,151 passed the examinations and were eligible for joining secondary school or any polytechnic of their choice.

However out of those that passed, the Ministry of Education plans to only place 564,856 students in the available secondary schools and  polytechnic institutions. This leaves 52,295 students in the wind and it remains unclear where they will end up, according to the education ministry.

According to the education ministry, the lists that are used during selection are generated by a computer system that determines where candidates will go depending on their performance and where they placed their choices. However in some cases, some students who do not make good choices end up not having anywhere to go.

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However, Kule Benson, the chairperson of the School Placement Committee says that the ministry has catered for all students. Kule adds that some of the candidates are missing because they are not guided well during the school choice making process.

"The process places candidates according to where they put choices. If a candidates puts a choice in Gayaza, Nabisunsa, Maryhill and Namagunga and gets 8 instead of the 5 wanted by all the four schools, this candidate will likely not have a school placement. They will miss on the list because none of their four choices can admit them," Kule explained.

Out of the numbers to be placed, 294,916 candidates will be placed in government Universal Secondary Schools while 28,440 candidates will be placed in secondary schools. 237,120 candidates will be placed in private secondary schools in the country while 4,380 candidates will be placed in different Business Technical Vocational Education and Training Institutions.

Many secondary schools have maintained cut off points from last year in the ongoing Senior 1 section exercise.

Traditional schools like  Ndejje Secondary School, Mary Hill, Makerere College School, Nabisunsa Girls School, Gayaza High School,Immaculate Heart , Kira College Butiki, Kyebambe Girls, Kyambogo College School and other all maintained cut off points from last year.

William Ssenyanja, a deputy head teacher at Nakwaya Secondary School, one of the few schools that lowered their cut off points from 28 in 2019 to 24 in 2020 says that he wishes the cut off points had remained the same.

"Being a USE school, we do not get the chance to decide how many learners that we can take. This keeps out many learners. So, we wish we could have used last year's cutoff points," Ssenyanja said.