Secondary Schools in Kenya

By Kenya / February 16, 2016

Education in Kenya dates back as early as 1738 in the coastal region, as attested by a Swahili manuscript, Utendi wa Tambuka (Book of Heraclius). Since then, education system in Kenya had experienced growth and evolution, which has born various level oflearning institutions. In 1967, the East African Community which consisted of Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania adopted the 7-4-2-3 system of education. This meant 7 years for primary education, 4 years of Secondary education, 2 years of high school and 3-5 years spent on college/ university education. In 1985, President Daniel arap Moi introduced the 8-4-4 system, which is to date applied widely in Kenyan schools and all public schools. Some private school offer the British curriculum, which like the 8-4-4 system, include 4 years of secondary education.

The first school in Kenya was set up at Rabai in 1846.As the missionaries entered into the interior of Kenya, they built more and more schools. Among the secondary schools established by the missionaries are Maseno School (1906), Kenya high school (1908), TumuTumu girl’s high school (1908), among others. With the growth of education in Kenya and more and more people enrolling for education, they have been establishment of more government and private schools.In 2008, there were 3282 public primary schools in Kenya, and they are a number of new public schools established every year, as there is increased demand for education in Kenya, as education has become relatively affordable.

Categories of secondary schools in Kenya

Secondary schools in Kenya are categorized into 5 classes

  1. National schools
  2. Extra county schools
  3. County schools
  4. Sub-county schools
  5. Special Needs Education (SNE) secondary schools

National schools in Kenya

National schools is the most highly rankedcategory of the secondary schools in Kenya. The national schools are the crème de la crème of the secondary schools, showing excellent performance in KCSE. There are 103 national schools, clustered into 4 groups. The first cluster has 30 schools, second cluster has 25 national schools, cluster three 18 schools and cluster four has 30 schools. Candidates are expected to choose one school from every cluster. Here are the national schools in Kenya;

Cluster one national schools- 30 schools

Name of school County
1.      Lugulu girls Bungoma
2.      Friends school kamusinga Bungoma
3.      St. Patrick’s Iten El Geyo Marakwet
4.      Moi Mbururi Embu
5.      Garissa high Garissa
6.      Asumbi girls Homabay
7.      Moi girls Isinya Kajiado
8.      Kakamega high Kakamega
9.      Kipsigis girls Kericho
10.  Ribe boys Kilifi
11.  Nyabururu girls Kisii
12.  Kisii high Kisii
13.  Muthale girls Kitui
14.  Machakos boys Machakos
15.  Makueni boys Makueni
16.  Meru school Meru
17.  Chogoria girls Meru
18.  Kanga Migori
19.  Mama Ngina sec Mombasa
20.  Murang’a high Murang’a
21.  Pangani girls Nairobi
22.  Kapsabet boys Nandi
23.  Karima girls sec Nyandarua
24.  Kagumo boys Nyeri
25.  Maranda high Siaya
26.  Kenyatta high Taita Taveta
27.  Bura girls Taita Taveta
28.  St. Brigit’s girls Trans Nzoia
29.  Bunyore girls Vihiga
30.  Tartar girls West Pokot

Cluster two national schools in Kenya – 25 schools

Name of school County
1.      Mbooni girls Makueni
2.      Bahari girls Kilifi
3.      Chewoyet boys West Pokot
4.      Garbatula boys Isiolo
5.      Hola boys Tana river
6.      Kabiang’a boys Kericho
7.      Kathiani girls Machakos
8.      Kisima girls Samburu
9.      Lamu girls Lamu
10.  Mandera boys Mandera
11.  Moi girls Nyabohanse Migori
12.  Moi girls Mandera Mandera
13.  Moyale boys Marsabit
14.  Mpeketoni boys Lamu
15.  Nanyuki boys Laikipia east
16.  Ngao girls Tana river
17.  Nyandarua high school Nyandarua
18.  Oolaiser boys Kajiado
19.  Sa Kolanya girls Busia
20.  Sironga girls Nyamira
21.  St. joseph Chepterit girls Nandi
22.  Wajir girls Wajir
23.  Tenwek boys Bomet
24.  Turkana girls Turkana
25.  Wajir boys Wajir

Cluster three national school- 18 schools

Name of school District
1.      Mangu high Thika west
2.      Maseno school Kisumu west
3.      Starehe boys Starehe
4.      Limuru girls Limuru
5.      Alliance high kikuyu
6.      Loreto Limuru Limuru
7.      Nakuru girls Nakuru
8.      Kenya high Westlands
9.      Maryhill girls Thika west
10.  Moi forces academy Kamkunji
11.  Nairobi school Westlands
12.  Utumishi Naivasha
13.  Nakuru boys Nakuru
14.  Moi girls high Eldoret east
15.  Alliance girls Kikuyu
16.  Lenana school Dagoretti
17.  Moi forces Lanet Dagoretti
18.  Starehe girls Kasarani

Cluster four national schools – 30 schools

Name of school County
1.      Shimo La Tewa Mombasa
2.      Kwale high Kwale
3.      Matuga girls Kwale
4.      Nep girls Garissa
5.      Moi girls Marsabit
6.      Isiolo girls Isiolo
7.      St. Mary’s girls Meru
8.      Ikuu buys Tharaka Nithi
9.      Siakogo girls Embu
10.  Kitui high Kitui
11.  Bishop Gatimu Gandu Nyeri
12.  Baricho boys Kirinyaga
13.  Kabare girls Kirinyaga
14.  Mugoiri girls Murang’a
15.  Lowdar high Turkana
16.  Maralal high Samburu
17.  St. joseph boys Trans Nzoia
18.  Moi Kapsowar El Geyo Marakwet
19.  Baringo high Baringo
20.  Njonjo girls Laikipia
21.  Ole tipis girls Narok
22.  Kilgoris boys narok
23.  Kaplong girls Bomet
24.  Butere girls Kakamega
25.  Chavakali boys Vihiga
26.  Butula boys Busia
27.  Kisumu girls Kisumu
28.  Mbita high Homabay
29.  Nyambaria high Nyamira
30.  Ngiya girls high Siaya

5 top boys and girls in every sub county will be admitted to national school irrespective of whether they were in private or public school.

Candidates not selected to join national schools will be considered for admission in an extra county school of their choice.

Extra County schools in Kenya

There are currently 328 extra county schools in Kenya. During selection of schools, candidates choose 3 extra county schools, with one of them being outside the county in which their primary school is. This schools closely fall under the national schools and promote national schools in promotion of integration and benchmarking educational standards in their regions.

County schools in Kenya

They are boarding schools, other than the extra county and national school and some day- schools. There are 993 county schools currently.

Sub county schools in Kenya

There are 6,982 sub county schools in Kenya. The sub county schools are basically day schools and new boarding schools. Almost 100% of their population are from their host sub county.

Special Needs Education (SNE) secondary

These are boarding schools that admit and cater for the need of students with special needs. They pick and admit students from all over the country based on merit, candidate’s choice and their disability. They are 25 SNE secondary schools in Kenya.

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