The Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET) wants the government to provide security training for teachers deployed in volatile regions and arm them with guns.
Acting KUPPET Secretary General Moses Nthurima says arming teachers with guns will not only scare away attackers but will also give the tutors confidence to work in the high risk areas.
“We are repeating this demand that in the pockets of insecurity, teachers must be trained and provided with guns. You cannot confront a gun man with a chalk. When we take a teacher to insecurity prone areas that teacher will constantly live in fear. But if the gun is hanging on his back even bandits will know that teacher is a no-go zone and they will take a second though before making any mistake,” said Mr. Nthurima.
The demand comes following previous incidents where teachers have been killed by armed gunmen in the North-Eastern and Coast regions.
KUPPET is further asking the government to reduce the number of boarding of schools with an intention of facing them out completely, noting that teachers are overworked.
“We have realised there is no complementarity between efforts of the teachers and parents because one learners leave for boarding school they return home after three months and are foreigners to their parents. We want the efforts consolidated by having learners go home in the evening so that when they go to school they have an input from the parent and then they find the teacher,” said the KUPPET boss.
On the recent cases of unrest in schools, KUPPET has urged the government to move with speed to employ guidance and counselling teachers who will do nothing else but follow up on learners with issues in schools.
The union has also demanded that teachers be paid risk allowance.
“We demand that teachers are paid risk allowances. Teachers are constantly facing threats from learners and even parents and also pockets of insecurity. It has become extremely urgent that teachers are paid allowances. It cannot wait any we more,” added Mr. Nthurima.