Intern teachers in Junior Secondary Schools (JSS) have opposed a new rule imposed by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC), mandating them to complete a two-year term before attaining permanent and pensionable status.
The shockwave among intern teachers ensued when TSC declared that confirmation on permanent terms would only take place in 2025.
The new move marks a significant departure from the previous practice of absorbing intern teachers into permanent and pensionable terms after just one year of service.
The shift in approach is attributed to the substantial influx of intern teachers recruited by the Commission, coupled with the economic challenges faced by the country.
During a session with the Education Committee in Parliament, TSC’s Director of Staffing, Antonina Lentoijoni, and TSC’s Director for Legal Affairs, Calvin Anyuor, clarified that the 46,000 teachers engaged on internship terms will automatically transition to permanent and pensionable status after completing a two-year tenure.
The Commission insists that no teacher will be granted permanent status without undergoing the stipulated two-year internship.
TSC emphasizes that it currently has 46,000 teachers on its payroll from primary and secondary schools, including junior secondary, serving under internship terms.
The proposed extension of the contract has elicited concerns from many intern teachers, who find it demoralizing, especially considering the inadequate remuneration that fails to align with the current cost of living.
In February, the Commission hired 20,000 intern teachers, followed by an additional 20,000 in August. In January 2022, TSC assigned a total of 1,995 intern teachers to schools and renewed the internship contracts for 4,005 teachers whose one-year term concluded in December 2021 bringing the total number of intern teachers to 46,000.
Interns attached to primary schools receive a monthly stipend of Kshs. 15,000, while those in secondary schools receive Kshs. 20,000.