Primary School teachers exposed a trick in the grading system of the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) that allowed untrained teachers to earn promotions and higher salaries.
The primary school teachers petitioned Parliament, arguing that in 1996 the TSC Directorate of Personnel Management had published a plan of service mandating that all teachers with A-level academic qualifications submit their names for promotions across the country.
Petitioners claimed unqualified A-level teachers tried to deceive authorities by enrolling in a fast-track certification program at Kagumo and Bondo Teachers Training Colleges in just two weeks.
According to the primary teachers, this action effectively excluded other qualified A-level teachers who had not attended the course, while the Ministry of Education proceeded to grade and promote the tutors who participated in the two-week training program.
“The Ministry thereafter proceeded to grade untrained ‘A’ level teachers who had attended a two-week program at Kagumo and Bondo Teachers Training colleges to Secondary School Teachers, locking out other ‘A’ Level Primary School Teachers who had not attended the course, resulting in complaints by the ‘A’ level trained teachers,” read the petition.
The dissatisfied teachers complained that they had not received the promised pay raises and promotions.
Workers have the right to fair compensation, safe working conditions, and to form and join labor unions; they also have the right to participate in trade union activities; and they have the right to go on strike to protect their rights in their place of work.
The petition has been forwarded to the Senate’s Standing Committee on Education, which has less sixty days to react and table its report.
The TSC and teacher unions have recently begun negotiations to revise the 2021-2025 CBA in an effort to negotiate salary increases for teachers.
A 60% raise was requested by the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT), while a 42% increase was proposed by the Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET).
Collins Oyuu, secretary general of the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT), said that teachers have been permanently harmed by TSC’s inaction on pay raises over the past seven years.
Salary increases were excluded in the most recent collective bargaining agreement reached in 2021 because all parties recognized the country was still rebuilding from the severe impacts of the Covid 19 pandemic.