Some newly recruited Junior Secondary School (JSS) teachers have been compelled by their station heads to teach the primary school sections, sparking tensions between them and the school heads.
Sam Opondo, Siaya County Executive Secretary of the Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET), regretted that forcing the teachers to work where they were not posted was against their job descriptions.
Opondo regretted that in several institutions, the relationship between the heads of institutions and the JSS teachers was frosty because the heads feel inferior owing to the higher qualifications of those under them.
“The majority of the newly recruited JSS teachers are graduates who, under the 8-4-4 curriculum, would have been posted to teach in secondary schools. This is the big fear of the primary school heads,” he figured out.
He advised heads that JSS teachers are not “packages of trouble” but teachers who “must be facilitated and supported to teach and render services effectively”.
“The Presidential Working Party on Education Reforms (PWPER) proposed that heads of pre-primary, primary, and Junior School must be graduates. We want the idea to be implemented to protect the JSS teachers who are suffering exploitation in primary schools,” he added.
Opondo further noted that junior schools are currently understaffed and most teachers have had to handle more than 10 subjects in a day.
“This is a violation of the JSS teachers’ rights. They are forced to teach more subjects in primary school when they are already struggling to cope with the huge task in JSS,” he remarked.
By Erick Nyayiera
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