TSC top brass sets meeting to quell tensions with its restive field officers

TSC FIELD OFFICERS MEETING

A consultative meeting convened by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) management with its Sub-County Directors (SCDs) next week is expected to be explosive considering the plethora of grievances raised by the staff in the recent past.

The five-day meeting scheduled to run between Monday, August 21 to Friday, August 25, 2023, at the Lake Naivasha Resort will be attended by the over 348 field officers after a similar event planned earlier aborted under unclear circumstances.

In a memo written by the TSC CEO, Dr. Nancy Macharia dated August 14, 2023; seen by Education News, the teachers’ employer asks its regional directors and county directors to mobilize their respective SCDs to attend the crucial event. The letter does not however state the agenda for the event.

“The purpose of this memo is to request that you invite your respective Sub County Directors to the activity. The program will start from 8.30 am to 4.30 pm daily for the five days” states Dr. Macharia in the letter addressed to all TSC county directors and regional directors.

She further says the workshop would be non-residential which means staff would be required to make their own arrangements for accommodation. But the TSC boss reassures the field officers that a refund for transport expenses will be done at the venue.

The SCDs are however advised to provide receipts for the costs incurred in the travels so that they are reimbursed.

“Daily Subsistence Allowance (DSA) for participants will be disbursed and managed at the County level,” says Macharia

Several SCDs who spoke to Education News welcomed the TSC initiative to invite them for the consultative meeting and were upbeat that they would be afforded an opportunity to air their grievances to their seniors and hope that the matters will be addressed.

In an anonymous letter done last year and addressed to the TSC Chairman, Dr. Jamleck Muturi, the SCDs had complained of their stagnation in the same job group for over 12 years.

They said that at one point in 2014, they were subjected to suitability interviews for re-designation as substantive SCDs but the exercise came without any vertical movement.

The memorandum, seen by Education News says those who did not make the cut in those interviews were deployed as Teacher Management Officers (TMOs) and posted to county offices and later sub-counties. The Commission deployed a total of 47 TMOs to the various stations during the time.

The officers also allege they are not given stationery, airtime, or transport allowances to facilitate their movements in doing their work.

The officers acknowledged that they used to receive airtime until 2016 but the privilege was withdrawn suddenly for unknown reasons.

They also lamented over the high level of understaffing in the sub-counties. Such a unit comprises of the SCD, the Human Resource Officer (HRO), and one clerk.

They say some SCDs actually cover even two sub-counties and the amount of work to be done is huge. They appealed for the deployment of more staff to lessen their burdens.

By Our Reporter

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Education News - Newspaper Vol 281