Candidates from public schools dominated the list of top performers in this year's Advanced Certificate of Secondary Education (ACSEE) examinations, whose results were announced yesterday. The government-run schools produced seven of the ten top candidates countrywide to outshine those from private institutions, which had only three boys on the list.
The leading candidates from public schools were from Tabora Boys in Tabora Region, which had three top performers, Mzumbe High School in Morogoro Region with two, while Kibaha in Coast Region and Majengo in Kilimanjaro Region each had one in the group.
The rest of the candidates in the list of the top ten students were from Dar es Salaam's Feza Boys Secondary School, which is sponsored by the Turkish government. However, seminary and private schools occupy 16 of the top 20 positions among schools with less than 30 candidates as well as those with more than 30 candidates. The rest were the public schools mentioned previously. The National Examinations Council of Tanzania (Necta) director general, Dr Joyce Ndalichako, announced the results at a press conference in Dar es Salaam.
While Form Four national examinations are usually dominated by private institutions, public schools usually post better results among individual candidates because they enroll the cream of 'O' level performers, and are better equipped than ward schools, which also face a shortage of qualified teachers.
Yesterday Dr Ndalichako said some 3,226 candidates, including 2,054 boys and 1,172 girls scored Division I; 9,003 had Division II; 22,720 Division III; 6,011 scored Division IV and 3,546 - 2,346 boys and 1,200 girls - failed. A total of 34,949 school candidates, equivalent to 78.53 per cent, passed the exams, among them 12,868 girls (79 per cent) and 22,081 boys (78.25 per cent).
"A total of 34,949 school candidates scored first, second and third divisions," Dr Ndalichako said. Of the girls who wrote the exams, 88.74 per cent passed compared to 86.38 per cent of male candidates even though the boys has a clean sweep of the top 10 positions.
The top 10 girls nationally in the descending order were Doreen Kabuche (Benjamin Mkapa, Dar), Rahabu Mwang'amba (Kilakala, Morogoro), Mary Moshi (Kifungiro, Tanga), Nuru Kipato (Marian Girls, Coast), Zainab Hassan (Al-muntazir Islamic, Dar), Catherine Temu (Ashira, Kilimanjaro), Antonia Lugomo (Usongwe, Mbeya), Cecilia Mvile (Kifungiro, Tanga), Mariam Matovolwa (Kilakala) and Suzana Makoi (Tarakea, Kilimanjaro).
Candidates doing science subjects or taking a combination of physics, chemistry and mathematics (PCM) were among those ranked in the first eight positions countrywide. The other two candidates passed in the economics, geography and mathematics (EGM) combination.
The results, however, show a drop in performance compared to last year. According to last year's results, 55,772 candidates, equivalent to 88.85 per cent, passed, representing a drop of 1.61 per cent compared to this year's 49,653 candidates, equivalent to 87.24 per cent.
Dr Ndalichako said out of the 59,112 candidates who registered for the examination, 57, 146 students sat for the final exams, equivalent to 96.67 per cent. Some 1,966 candidates (3.33 per cent) did not show up.
Meanwhile, the Necta boss said private candidates who registered for the final exams were 14,154, but 12,426 out of the number equivalent to (87.79 per cent) sat for the final exam, and 1,728 equivalent to (12.21 per cent) did not show up.The number of private candidates who passed the final exam this year is 8,693, while last year was 10,547.
Marian Girls High School in Bagamoyo, Coast Region, has the overall top performer yet again. The school was also tops in last year's Form Four examinations.
Muhagachi Chacha from Kibaha Secondary School in Coast Region was the overall best student followed by Samwel Katwale Mzumbe Secondary School in Morogoro Region, while the third position was taken by Amiri Abdallah of Dar es Salaam's Feza Boys.
The top ten schools with less than 30 candidates were Uru Seminary, St James Seminary, Maua Seminary, Same Seminary, Dungunyi Seminary, DCT Jubilee, Parane, St. Joseph-Kilocha Seminary, Mlama and Masama Girls.
Meanwhile, Necta has nullified the results of 12 candidates, five among them being school and seven private candidates after it was discovered that they cheated in the exams.
The results of 218 candidates have been withheld for failing to pay the exam fee, however the results will be released immediately after paying the fee.