8 February 2018

Kenya: KNUT Wants TSC to Hasten Teacher Promotions

The Kenya National Union of Teachers on Thursday stepped up pressure on the Teachers Service Commission to promote more than 30,000 teachers who have acquired higher qualification, and drop performance appraisals.

Kenya National Union of Teachers secretary-general Wilson Sossion, accompanied by his chairman Wickliffe Omucheyi and national treasurer John Matiang'i, said the promotion of the teachers had been pending at TSC headquarters since 2014.

"Thousands of teachers are now approaching the sunset of their careers but for strange reasons have been sidelined in promotions," Mr Sossion said while addressing journalists in Nairobi.

"Among the teachers who qualified for upgrading are those who had gone back to study in various institutions of higher learning to further their education with the hope of being promoted.

"On a number of occasions we have engaged TSC to address the issue of delayed promotions and selective upgrading and, despite promise, nothing much has been done."

APPRAISALS

Mr Sossion insisted that TSC had no choice but to promote all pending cases within this financial year.

The union also wants performance appraisals dropped as the move had been introduced without exhaustive consultations with teachers.

"The system has subjected teachers to untold suffering and unprofessional discharge of duty.

"More so, the evaluation tools are biased, intimidating, unprofessional, encourage corruption in the teaching service, and are not standardised, considering that teachers operate in different environments," Mr Sossion said.

He went on: "Teachers have been strained during the first two years of implementation of the performance appraisal.

"The appraisal system has caused strained relations between teachers and heads of institutions on one hand and heads of institutions with county directors, who act as their supervisors."

STRESS

Mr Sossion said while undergoing performance appraisal, teachers are spending more time putting their papers in order at the expense of preparing lessons and teaching, a move that has increased stress levels because of looming punishment for those who do not get it right.

He said the union and TSC ought to sit down and iron out the nitty-gritty of the contracts in order for the union to guide its members on the pros and cons of the contracts.

The TSC chief executive officer, Dr Nancy Macharia, did not reply to queries by Daily Nation.

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