Admissions Policy

With such a demand for places at Starehe, it is important to guard against fraudulent applications.

To this end, both schools have strict admissions criteria and a recognised process for ensuring that the most needy students benefit:

Boys’ Centre policy
Girls’ Centre policy

Boys' Centre policy

Starehe Boys' Centre accepts 216 pupils per year, into six classes of 36 students each.

All applications are considered by the Admission team, comprising:

  • The Director
  • The Principal
  • The Senior Master for Admissions (who heads up the Admissions Office)
  • The Senior Master of Form I

The criteria for Admission to Form I are:

• All candidates must be aged 16 or under, and make Starehe their first choice of National Secondary School

• All candidates must complete the official Form I application form, and return it to Starehe by 31st July of the year they are sitting their Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exams – and they must go on to gain a good KCPE pass

• Candidates seeking a free place must also have their family and home circumstances verified by their District Officer or local Chief, and a Minister of Religion, such as a Priest or Imam

Fee payers and non-fee payers

70% of Form I places are reserved for needy boys from severely disadvantaged family backgrounds - all accepted as boarders.

30% of places are for fee-paying students, who may choose to board – depending on vacancies.

Needs assessment

Need is assessed on a scale of 1 (lowest) to 8 (highest), for example:

  • 8 - A ‘total orphan’ – with no extended family able to send him to an ordinary secondary school.
  • 7 - A boy whose father is dead or incapacitated, and whose mother and extended family have no means to assist him.
  • 6 - A boy whose mother is dead or incapacitated, and whose father and extended family have no means to assist him.
  • 5 - A boy whose parents are still alive but extremely poor, with no reliable source of income.

Boys are also graded according to age, from the highest priority of Grade 8 at 13 years, to the lowest of Grade 5 at 16 years.

Ensuring a regional mix

After grading, the remaining forms are grouped per province and district, to make sure that each province is represented.

After the KCPE marking in November, individual applications are further considered by the Admissions team - with much discussion and debate before final agreement is reached.

Unfortunately, due to the multi-storey nature of the school dormitories, it is not currently possible to accept boys with a severe physical disability.

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Girls' Centre policy

Starehe Girls’ Centre accepts 80 pupils per year.

The criteria for Admission to Form I are:

• All candidates must be aged 16 or under and must make Starehe their first choice of National Secondary School

• All candidates must complete the official Form I application form, and return it to Starehe by 31st July of the year they are sitting their Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exams – and go on to gain a good KCPE pass

• Forms must be signed by the candidate’s parent or guardian, their Head Master or Head Mistress, their District Officer or local Chief, and a Minister of Religion, such as a Priest or Imam – all of whom must verify the girl’s social background

Needs assessment

Need is assessed on a scale of 1 to 10, with the least disadvantaged (those in categories 1 to 5) being discounted.

After grading, the remaining forms are grouped per province and district, to make sure that each province is represented. A file is then opened for each province in advance of the KPCE results.

The selection process

After the KCPE marking in November, individual applications are further considered by a select committee of 12 staff members.

If there are any areas of uncertainty relating to a girl’s circumstances, a staff member may be released to make a home visit.

The whole process takes a maximum of three to four days and involves much debate before final agreement is reached.

Offering places

All selected girls, and their parents or guardians, are then invited to the Centre and interviewed separately. Providing their answers agree with those expressed on the application form, the girl will then be formally admitted – with each assigned a ‘sister’ to induct her in the unique culture & ethos of Starehe.

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Picture of Biology ClassStarehe's 'famous' application forms

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