The Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers, KUPPET, has come out to strongly oppose the move by the Teachers Service Commission, TSC, to make it mandatory for teachers to have masters degrees before getting promotions to managerial positions.
Here is the presser from the union;
‘KUPPET is concerned by a new requirement introduced by the Teachers Service Commission, TSC, for promotions to Headship of secondary schools.
According to the advertisement for the vacancies published last month, teachers seeking promotions to Principal and Deputy Principal’s positions must have at least a Masters degree in Education, Consequently, Teachers without Masters Degrees have experienced trouble filing their applications on the online portal where the Masters degree is a mandatory field.
This requirement is unnecessarily punitive, flies in the face of the Code of Regulations for Teachers and all other Instruments governing the profession. No where is a Masters degree required for Principals and Deputy Principals instead a Master’s degree is considered an added advantage for candidates applying for such positions.
In addition, the TSC has made it very hard for teachers to obtain Masters degrees. For starters, it provides very limited study leave positions that enable teachers to further their studies.
In recent years, it has even forbidden teachers from educating themselves through school-based programmes.
In these circumstances, how does the commission expect teachers to get the Masters degrees?
Also of cancer is the scanty number of Masters degree holders in the teaching profession. Even with the admirable efforts by teachers to further their training, there are regions in this country that hardly have teachers with Masters degrees.
The regions, however, have scores of highly experienced teachers, many of whom have served in Job Group C3 or higher for more than 15 years.
It would beat the purpose of national development to deprive such teachers, and by implication the regions they come from, of opportunities that rightly belong to them. Indeed, this would be a form of legalized discrimination.
We are also astonished by the commissions demands on some principals and Deputy Principals who have been acting in these positions to vacate office for new ones to be appointed. Some of these administrators, who were in Job Group L during their appointments, have been in their positions for years, having been deployed before the current requirements limiting such promotions to teachers in Job Groups M and above.
In some areas such as Coast and Turkana, nearly all teachers are in Job Group L or below, including many of those currently acting as Principals and Deputy Principals.
Any promotion procedures which deny such teachers of their deserved positions are clearly unacceptable.
Given these concerns, we have written to the commission to request that the advertisement be amended and the condition for Masters degree be withdrawn and affirmative action principles be applied for promotions in marginalized areas.’