Girls beat boys, reversing national trend
Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The national trend in the performance at Primary Leaving Exams (PLE) was reversed at Bridge Schools as girls beat boys. According to some statistics, boys are 9% more likely to outperform girls at the country level yet at Bridge girls are 5% more likely to beat the boys.
Meanwhile 95% of Bridge candidates who sat for 2018 PLE passed in Division 1 and 2. Last year, Bridge had 368 pupils sitting for PLE: 188 girls and 180 boys. The number was a huge leap from its inaugural class of 46 who sat for the national exam. It was also an improved performance from 93%-95% among those who passed in Division 1 and 2.
According to the UN, 700,000 primary school aged girls have never attended school in Uganda with 23% of those who do attend school, dropping out early due to teenage pregnancy and 35% due to early marriage.
Districts including Hoima in the western region and Busia in the eastern region where some Bridge academies are located revealed girls to be the best performers. In the eastern district of Mayuge, 14-year-old Brenda Namusobya scored an impressive 10 aggregate, placing her in Division One alongside Uganda’s brightest pupils. Her results are even more telling considering that the region is one of the most impoverished areas of the country.
Speaking about her results, Namusobya from Bridge School Magamaga in Mayuge district: “I am so happy about my results. I studied hard and I knew that I would make it. I had lots of help from my amazing teachers who never gave up on me.”
Bridge’s best performing boy was 13 year old Rogers Mugisha from Bridge, Kengere in Soroti District who scored 8 aggregates. He could not hide his excitement. “I really thank God. Now, I know I can be a doctor. All my teachers were excellent in helping me do so well on my exams.”
Commenting on the PLE results, Christine Apiot, Academic Director for Bridge in Uganda, said girls can perform as well as boys when given the right support and encouragement. “We are so proud of our pupils and especially our girls who have performed exceptionally well in these exams. The results show the fantastic dedication, passion and hard work that our teachers put into each and every lesson.