Senators Reject TSC Promotions Based On Learner Performance
Senators have criticized the Teachers Service Commission over what they see as unfair promotions which are demoralizing teachers.
The lawmakers pointed out a TSC policy that sticks promotion of teachers to the performance of their students and pupils.
The TSC policy states that teachers are to be promoted to the positions of the headteacher, county director, and sub-county director must be gotten only from those serving in job groups L, M, and N.
“However, the question is: Who determines the performance of students? Is it the teacher per se?” posed nominated senator Isaac Mwaura.
Mwaura argued that there are many factors that determine how students perform. This may comprise factors like environment and poverty levels. Children who come from poor family backgrounds may not have access to adequate food, for example.
“Therefore, to grade teachers based on the performance of their students is not fair,” added the nominated senator.
Mwaura also sought from the Teachers Service Commission the names and distribution of the teachers who have been promoted in the recent past. The Nominated Senator claimed that the promotions were skewed.
He then asked TSC to promote teachers fairly and rate teachers depending on the performance as per the target of the students. He insisted that the targets for teachers in boarding schools should not be the same as those from those teaching in day schools, county schools, etc.
Bomet Senator Christopher Langat pointed out that issues of promotion and recruitment have become a problem in recent times.
Senator Langat said that there are teachers who graduated as recently as 2013 and got promoted yet those who graduated many years ago are yet to receive any promotions. It has been known that teachers who graduated 12 or 13 years ago have never been promoted even though their performance is good.
Nominated Senator Agnes Zani said that issues of promotion are key as it determines many things ranging from salaries and personal achievements.
She said that the discrepancies in the promotion are even projected to be even worse because of the Competency-Based Curriculum, where the current Standard Six and Grade Four pupils will have an intake that is double one of normal times as they go to Form One.
“It is predicted that about 60,000 teachers will have to be added by 2023. This means that the issues of recruitment, criteria for promotion, and fairness need to come out clearly,” she posed.
“Whether it is a perception or reality, the data will show for itself where promotions seem to be skewed. Sometimes, it is not just skewed in a single county but across many counties,” she said.
Kitui Senator Enock Wambua asked TSC to devise a clear path of progression for teachers. He argued that this leads to teacher discontent.
“These days we are dealing with many cases of teachers engaging inside activities to make more money because the career progression path is not clear-cut,” said Wambua.
“They do not even know whether they will grow into anything,” he said, adding that promotion in employment is a very serious issue because it helps employees to plan their lives.
The lawmaker argued that promotion should be based on criteria that reward both time and performance.
Besides, he added that are teachers who have been in the classroom for a long time, do well in their job but they never get promotions.
“There are others who get in today and in a few years, they are earning a lot more than their colleagues of the same standard. It is crucial that this issue is dealt with,” said the senator.