What you need to know:
- Since no one made any noise at the time he was appointed, I was sure they would make noise when they come to know who Kuya really was.
- I had thought it would take some time before they did, but already, teachers, students and parents are making lots of noise.
When Kuya, despite my protests to the clueless TSC honchos, was appointed the Deputy Headmaster of this school, I expected teachers to make some noise, I knew parents would make lots of noise, and I thought pupils would really make noise.
None of them made any noise, they just allowed this guy who should never even be a teacher in a school worth its salt to be called deputy, having done nothing to deserve that big title.
Since no one made any noise at the time he was appointed, I was sure they would make noise when they come to know who Kuya really was. I had thought it would take some time before they did, but already, teachers, students and parents are making lots of noise.
It all started last week when we started to make the end-term arrangements. It is not the first time we are closing school; we were all looking for a routine closure. A closure with no issues. Then Kuya happened.
"I would like all of us to try as much as possible to complete all exam-related matters by early this week so that we can close early next week," he said on Monday.
And said this time he wanted to have a view of all the exams.
As usual, we kept busy with the closing activities. I also took up Kiswahili revision for class eight. This being the last KCPE, I was keen that we make a statement and was providing the finishing touches to a class that Nzomo had been teaching. I did not know that all this was unappreciated.
"I have been toiling with the candidates for the last three years, and now that some people have realised that the students are good, they want to pretend to be teaching them so that when the students pass, they will take credit. Tunawajua," Nzomo complained last Tuesday, during tea break.
"What is the issue?" wondered Mrs Atika, "I thought we agreed to all support each other for KCPE preparations?"
"When did we agree?" asked Nzomo.
"Last week, and your husband the deputy chaired the meeting," added Sella.
“For the hundredth time, Kuya is not my husband. I don't know how many times I will keep reminding everyone."
She went on, "Anyway, even if we all want to assist, at least let us not mislead the students," said Nzomo.
"Are you saying some people here are lying to the students?" wondered Alex.
"Yes, after spending years teaching students the new ngeli, someone has gone there to teach them old ngeli, the one used in the 90s."
"That's crazy," said Lena, her terrible hair in tow.
"It happens when you have not been in class for long, you do not even realise the syllabus has changed. That’s why I am worried if these pensioners can handle CBC, a modern thing."
I did not need a calculator to know they were talking about me. I pretended to be busy working. I would have my days a few days later.
It was tea break on Wednesday. For some reason, some teachers had expected they would close school early, but Kuya was keen to go up to the last day.
“This is a new administration,” said Kuya when Sella complained.
“The school timetable is well known, so I do not understand what you are asking,” Kuya said firmly.
He insisted on checking the report cards and to initial them before I signed. That was the first time I heard about initiating as a verb!
There was more. If you do not know, the grade 5-7 students sit for a national test. The expectation was for each teacher to, after marking, post the scores on NEMIS. As HM and Deputy, I never bothered to check. But Kuya, I do not know how, managed to log in and confirm several teachers had not posted their marks.
“Unless you enter the marks on NEMIS, I will not allow the school to close,” he declared last Wednesday.
“So many schools do not bother with that useless work,” said Mrs Atika.
“This is not ‘so many schools’, this is Mwisho wa Lami 2.0!” said Kuya.
Kuya released the list of shame of those who had not uploaded marks on NEMIS. Mrs Atika, Madam Ruth, Alex, and Lena. Only Nzomo and Saphire, of all the people, had done it.
“How can someone who did not administer any exams or mark any paper have marks uploaded on NEMIS?” asked Madam Ruth.
“Does Saphire even have a password to NEMIS? Does he even know what it is?” wondered Lena.
“Leave me alone and carry your own cross,” said Saphire.
At that point, Kuya demanded to see the actual scripts. Saphire told him off, “That is like asking IEBC to open the servers. I can only provide you with the scripts if the court directs me to.” He did not seem perturbed.
That Thursday, ahead of Mashujaa Day, teachers wondered if we would close on Monday or Tuesday. Kuya told them he expected all of us to be there until Friday, the day for rehearsals.
“What shall we be doing here up to Friday?” wondered Nzomo, who had already planned to travel to Nunguni, Ukambani. Alex also said he had something to do in Eldoret.
That evening, teachers asked me to intervene, but I declined. The date for closing school is an operational issue that a HM need not get involved in, I told them. I added that I was responsible for weighty, strategic matters.
The truth was that these same teachers had considered me old just a few days earlier. If any of them thought that I was going to make noise for them, I am sorry, they are on their own!