PLE Results: Overall Performance Improves, Results for 3,500 Candidates Withheld

Education Minister, Janet Museveni (R) and UNEB Chairperson, Mary Okwakol officially releasing the 2018 PLE results. (Photo: @Bamulanzeki)

Uganda National Examinations Board (UNEB), a national examinations body, has Thursday released results of last year’s Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE), indicating an improvement in overall performance compared to the previous year.

The event took place at the office of the Prime Minister in Kampala and was presided over by the First Lady, Janet Museveni, who also doubles as the minister of Education and Sports.

The outcome of the results indicate that despite girls who registered for last year’s PLE, being more than the boys, the latter performed better. On this the minister credited parents for appreciating that both deserve equal privileges including education.

She however said that while this is good news for th girl child, stakeholders need to find out the reasons for this gender disparity because over time it might be a reversal of a previous problem where more boys were in school compared to the boys.

She further expressed pleasure with the increase in the number of children who registered for the 2018 PLE. Candidates increased from 3.9% in 2018 compared to 0.8% in 2017.

People can access results by sending a text message through their phones by typing PLE leave space and then the full index number of the pupil and the send to 6600. Others can use the link;


A total of 671,923 candidates registered to sit for 2018 PLE from 13,072 centres. Out of whom, 476,131 were from Universal Primary Education (UPE) schools and 195,792 from private schools.

This indicates an increase in the number of candidates and centres in the previous years. Unlike 2017 where percentage increase was only 0.8%, in 2018, candidates increased by 3.9%.

By gender, 324,963 (48.3%) boys registered for the 2018 examinations and girls were 346,963 (51.6%) indicating that more girls sat for PLE this year than the boys.

1,128 learners with disabilities registered for the 2018 PLE.

Out of the total 671,923 registered candidates, 659,633 sat for the examinations with the number of absentees being 12,293(1.8%) lower than last year’s 2.3%.


According to Dan Odong, the UNEB Executive Secretary, 87.7% passed English, 77% passed Mathematics, 95.5% passes Social Studies and 92.3% passed Science.

Although, Mathematics had been the worst done with only 77% of the learners passing it, but an increase at distinction level was registered.

He said in English and Mathematics, performance was poor in questions which required application of knowledge in problem solving questions.

Learners however, improved in handwriting.

Division Performance

77,133 candidates passed in division one (11.8%) and 56,105 (8.6%) failed compared to 9.1% and 9.1% respectively in 2017.

A total of 41,604 (13.1%) boys and 35,529(10.5%) girls passed in division one.

In summary, 10.5% of the registered learners passed in Division one, 40.6% in Division two, 25.9% in Division three, 16.6% in Division four and 9.4% failed.

Malpractice and Withheld Results

The examinations body has withheld results of 3,500 candidates on suspicion of examination malpractice pending completion of investigations.

According to Odong, a number of teachers in different schools were found by security officers giving external assistance to learners in the examination rooms by writing answers on the chalkboard for learners to copy prompting withdrawal of results of 50 schools across the country.

He said they will be accorded a fair hearing by the Board’s Examination Security Committee.

A total of 8 schools including; Bundimulinga Primary School, Bupandi Primary School, Clevers Origin Primary School and Bundikahungu Primary School in Bwamba County, Izahura Sitting center which hosted Bupomboli Primary School, Kihoko Primary School and Green Cycle Primary School in Bughendera County all in Bundibugyo district were caught by the security operatives.

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