A 35-year-old mother of two is celebrating after scoring a C+ (plus) in the 2022 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) exam whose results were released on Friday.
Mercy Chepkurui, who sat her exam at Nacace Adult Secondary School, is among the 173,345 candidates who attained the minimum university entry grade of C+.
Chepkurui, a widow, sat her Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exam in 2001 and immediately got married at just 15 years old. Soon after, her husband died, leaving her with two little children to fend for.
The mother of two resorted to doing menial jobs to provide food for her family.
“Nilikuwa nafanya kazi ya kuchuna majani chai, ambapo kilo moja ilikuwa shilingi nne,” she recalls.
Having struggled to make ends meet, she decided to return to school 19 years after writing her KCPE examination. She was admitted to Nacace Adult Secondary School.
With her admission, Chepkurui was forced to wake up at 4 am to work in a quarry for three hours before going back home to prepare for class.
“Saa zingine kama niko na mtihani, nakuja kukaa kwa nyumba nikisoma na kusomesha watoto. Wengi sana waliniambia niwache kusoma nisomeshe watoto, kwamba hii umri masomo haitanisaidia,” she adds.
She is happy that her hard work in school paid off and she managed to attain the minimum university entry grades. She hopes to join university and pursue a degree in Community Development.
For now, she is back to the quarry, where she helps break rocks into small pieces for use in construction sites.
Chepkurui still has a fee balance of Sh40,000 and wants to save some money for her two children who will write their KCSE next year.