Almost 10,000 school heads resolved yesterday to advocate for the placement of grades 7, 8, and 9 in primary schools, claiming that they are capable of supervising junior secondary students.
Kenya Primary School Head Teachers’ Association (Kepsha) resolved to support the proposal to convert all secondary boarding schools to day schools after a three-day conference.
They claimed that this would allow parents to participate in raising their children, reducing arson in secondary schools and raising educational standards.
The proposal by the headteachers to push for Grades 7, 8, and 9 to be housed in primary schools comes a day after the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) appears to place a restriction on primary school teachers who can be promoted to secondary school teachers.
TSC announced on Wednesday that only teachers with a mean grade of C+ in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) would be promoted to teach in secondary schools, regardless of their degree.
Thousands of teachers who received less than a C+ in the KCSE but pursued a diploma to obtain a degree or a master’s degree were previously barred.
“Kepsha also proposes that the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) should consider a hardship allowance to teachers when they are delocalised,” stated part of the 28-point resolutions.
At the same time, the principals want their employer, the Teachers Service Commission (TSC), to pay a hardship allowance to teachers who have been transferred as part of the delocalisation policy.
The principals also suggested that the government provide desks for schools and map out schools in slums so that all bright but needy children can attend school.
“Kepsha would engage the Ministry of Education to ensure all schools receive funds by the beginning of the term and increase the capitation,” said Kepsha National Secretary Philip Mitei.
Mutei, who read the resolutions after the conference ended yesterday at Mombasa’s Sheikh Zayed Children Centre, said the teachers agreed to ensure that textbooks for each new grade were delivered before the child moved up a grade.
Meanwhile, TSC Chairman Jamleck Muturi stated yesterday that the majority of retired teachers had not received their benefits because their files were missing at the ministry.
Dr Muturi told about 10,000 headteachers in Mombasa that the commission would implement a biometric system to capture and digitize teachers’ data for effective service delivery.
He stated that the commission was working on strategies to expand professional services and that an online training program for teachers was already in place on CBC.
TSC, according to Muturi, will automate its recruitment, transfer, registration, and leave processes.
A teacher management information management system (TMIS) has been installed, according to him.
“We are also hearing the disciplinary cases virtually to dispense cases quickly,” he said.
“In order for you to lead effectively as the engines of education in the country, you cannot be rigid because knowledge is not a monopoly of an individual,” said Muturi.
The heads agreed to continue supporting the CBC system, which was initiated by the government to replace the 8-4-4 system.
The headteachers backed Knut Secretary-General Collins Oyuu’s proposal to convert all schools in the country to day schools.
On Tuesday, Education Cabinet Secretary Prof George Magoha assured headteachers that funds would be made available to schools when classes resumed the following week.
He also asked teachers to ensure that no child is left behind due to poverty in their education.
“We will ensure there is 100 per cent transition of learners from primary to secondary to enable every child to have an opportunity of developing his or her potential,” said Mitei.
The conference also decided to promote essay writing competitions for students