Schools in Kenya have never achieved full capacity of teachers from the Teachers Service Commission. This has always necessitated schools’ Board of Management to employ teachers on contract in order to reduce the workload in schools and improve the efficacy of every teacher in service delivery.
These schools have shown varied salary payment to these teachers something that has shown teachers unable to cater for themselves and settle their bills. This is as a result of meagre salaries that these schools pay these category of teachers. Some of these teachers are married and they have children to cater for and pay their school fees something that they have not been able to achieve because of the meagre salaries.
Some schools before Covid-19 hit the country, some of them were being paid well. When the schools were closed down on March, these teachers were never catered for in so many schools despite the fact that they are the ones who offer more services in these schools. They were abandoned and left to starve to the point others were ready to take away their lives due to hard economic times. Some were locked out of their houses since they were not able to pay their rent and bills for electricity and water. Some schools that were kind enough paid their BoM teachers a third of their salaries to keep their alive.
Later on when the President of the Republic of Kenya directed that BoM teachers to be paid stipends of Ksh. 10,000 each, some schools went ahead and denied some teachers these amount of money citing that they joined the school on later dates and others were not in possession of TSC number. These category of teachers suffered a major blow something that saw them get traumatized and agonized with this situation.
When schools reopened in October for the form fours, some schools denied the teachers on BoM a chance to come and teach the form fours despite the fact that they had candidate classes. This was done with some schools in order to avoid spending more expenses.
Later on when the schools reopened in January, 5th 2021, these category of BoM teachers were recalled back once again to continue dispensing their services. The worst part of it was that these teachers were initially paid higher amount of money, but when they were recalled, they started paying them a flat rate of Ksh. 10,000 something that they argued that the government had set for them a standard of these amount when it instructed them to pay them Ksh.10,000 during the Covid-19 period.
This showed some BoM teachers resign from some schools and looking for other jobs. Since then, many schools are paying their teachers a salary of ten thousand something that has made these teachers suffer since they are unable to meet their daily needs and pay for their bills.
Similarly, these teacher are not recognized in these schools as they are sidelined by the school management when making decisions pataining to academic improvement. The irony that is facing all these drama is that these teachers being sidelined by the school management are the ones who are in the front line in helping the learners in consultation during odd hours when the teacher on Permanent basis have left home at 4.00 p.m . Furthermore, these teachers are being used by the TSC teachers in handling their lessons when they are not in school without any sort of appreciation.
In some schools, these teachers are segregated from the TSC teachers as they occupy a different staffroom from them. This is discrimination of the highest order. From the look of things, it’s clear that these category of teachers are suffering and the Teachers Service Commission should look into these unemployed teachers and device a modality on how to help them out of this trauma and agony that is facing them. It’s high time the teachers on BoM form their own union that will look into their grievances and needs and articulate them appropriately.
We also strongly advice the school management to inculcate these teachers in school operations including decision making and academic improvement modalities. School managements should also allow these teacher mingle with these TSC employed teachers so that they can also feel appreciated and being part of the system.