What you need to know:
- Teachers have been transferred to far off areas, which will make them fail, a Kuppet official says.
- The officials argue that the Education ministry and TSC did not consult teachers or their unions about the transfers.
Teachers have accused their employer, Teachers’ Service Commission, and Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i of punishing them through the massive transfers.
Mt Kenya Teachers’ Forum coordinator Ndung’u Wangenye said the CS and TSC chief executive Nancy Macharia are inconsiderate about the welfare of 557 principals and deputies affected by the transfers.
‘DOOMED TO FAIL’
“The move will have severe consequences and will tragically fail. For instance, there is a principal who has been transferred from Trans-Nzoia to Survey High School in Laikipia. The teacher does not know the terrain or anybody in that region and he will be commuting daily from Nyahururu Town,” complained Mr Wangenye.
He said the transferred principals will have a challenge to manage the new stations due to lack of know-how of local issues.
“Matiang’i is handling the education docket like the Provincial Administration department in his other post in the Ministry of Interior. The officers, like district officers in provincial administration, are transferred and accorded security but teachers have no security,” added Mr Wangenye.
He asked TSC to exercise restraint in the massive transfers and nullify them.
Mr Wangenye, who is also the executive secretary for the Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) Laikipia County, said the transfers should have been done on national and extra-county schools but not the sub-county secondary schools.
“Sub-county schools need a local person who also knows residents,” he noted.
The Kuppet Nyeri County executive secretary Mwangi Maina said the TSC boss and the Cabinet Secretary are punishing the principals through the transfers.
He said the move will affect the teachers’ social and economic life, stating that most of them had committed their salaries to loans.
“The transfers should have been done within regions but not moving a teacher from Kakamega to Nanyuki. We have meagre salaries which cannot afford to address most expenses. They will find it hard to travel home every weekend due to financial constraints,” said Mr Maina.
He termed the move “unwise and not well-thought-out” adding there is looming crisis.
“Transfers are necessary but with moderation and consultation. In this case TSC did not consult the teachers or their unions. For instance, if a teacher is transferred within a region it is acceptable. From one county to the neighbouring [is also acceptable], but not from one end of the country to the other end,” said Mr Maina.
“We are wondering what the motive of the transfers is. Matiang’i and Macharia should learn to consult,” he added.
While commenting on the mass failure in the 2017 KCSE examination, Mr Maina said CS Matiang’i is condemning a certain generation in Kenya.
“Does it mean all of a sudden our students have become fools and can’t pass exams? There should be investigations on whether the exams are above standard because the tests should gauge, not condemn [them],” said Mr Maina.
He noted that there is a 100 per cent transition from primary to secondary school, but not from secondary to tertiary institutions.
Mr Maina added that Mr Matiang’i is killing investments made by private individuals in private universities as they will close for lack of students.