After Kenya’s education ministry released the results of the 2021 standard 8 national exams on 13 April 2021, a photo of a girl wearing a torn school sweater began circulating online with the claim she was a top-performing student.
“Beautiful girl from a humble background scores 403 marks (out of 500), help me congratulate Peris Jebet,” one user captioned the photo.
“Congratulations Peris Jebet. No human is limited no matter the situation,” another said.
One said she was a “winner” because she hadn’t attended a private school: “Congratulations to Jebet a true hustler for scoring 403 marks from a public primary school, this girl is a true winner.” Yet another user promised to give the girl KSh5,000 “for her shopping”.
‘What if other kids start teasing her?’
“URGENT NOTICE!!! Please disregard any reports of KCPE results in circulation of the below pictured student,” the post reads. “The girl is a pupil at one of our partner schools, and is yet to sit for the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education examination.”
It adds: “We have come across different accounts sharing this image with varying false information relating to 2020 KCPE results. Kindly disregard all.”
On 20 April the Tuko website published the photo in a report headlined: “It was shameful seeing my daughter trending in torn uniform, mother of girl linked to KCPE success.”
According to the report, the girl's name is not “Peris Jebet”. She is 10 years old. Standard 8 pupils are generally 12 years old.
“The picture of the girl is my daughter but the name is not hers ... She is 10 years and is yet to sit for her exams,” it quotes the girl’s mother as saying.
“Right now she is in upcountry. But what if she comes back and other kids start teasing her? I think she can start hating herself."
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