Teachers Arena can authoritatively reveal a move by key players to force the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) to revisit its earlier position of agreeing to pay teachers for the period schools are closed due to coronavirus pandemic. On wednesday last week TSC assured teachers that they will continue to receive there salaries despite schools been closed as they are not the architect of the current quagmire.
“As of now, there is no plan to stop paying teachers. This is because it is not the teacher who has refused to go to class. Schools are closed due to the Covid-19. If the teacher is called upon to resume teaching, they will do so the following day, so long as conditions are right,” said Beatrice Wababu, TSC Director of Communications.
But immediately followed a series of activities deliberately aimed to protest against this move which will see teachers pocket at least twenty billion monthly till when schools reopen later in January next year.
Last week deranged teachers took to social media to denounce The Standard Newspaper’s headline on 9th July 2020, which read “TSC employed teachers shall enjoy their full pay while idle” The teachers who cited the headline as disrespectful, disparaging and inciting called for a boycott of the Standardmedia newspapers and KTN news channel till they apologize for the mischief reporting.
However it did not end their with Standardmedia reporter Protus Onyango as now major players have joined for call to either pay teachers only subsistence allowances rather than full pay or an alternative be sought to justify the teachers salaries paid from the public coffers. Subsistence allowance is money to a worker to pay for necessities only like food and rent.
A recent move by popular TV and Radio stations seems to suggest that its wrong for teachers to continue earning with nothing to do while putting the entire blame on the teachers employer. The heightened debate further suggest teachers should be given tasks that can justify there continued pay.
They further suggest in many articles that teachers should be used in other national projects like bridge or even road constructions. That teachers can be used in many ways including mitigating effects of covid-19 which has led to rampant teenage pregnancies.
But the teachers employer last week through its social media handles assured teachers they will be paid on top also they should expect a salary increment by end of July as it will implement a CBA signed in 2017 and is expected to come to an end this month. The CBA 2017-2021 was signed between TSC and teachers unions Knut and Kuppet.
“Key among our achievements is the signing of the 2017-2021 Collective Bargaining Agreement with teachers’ unions.
The fourth phase of CBA implementation comes at the end of this month. Another crucial achievement is the automation of TSC services and especially the T-Pay system through which you approve and monitor your third party financial transactions.
As the Covid 19 situation keeps on evolving, we encourage you to continue staying safe. Together we shall conquer the challenges of the “new normal” of living with the virus and continue serving our great nation.” said the head of TSC communications through TSC Kenya facebook handle.
Teachers Arena position is that the debate on teachers salaries on whether they should continue to earn while still at home is uncalled for during this harsh times brought about by the coronavirus pandemic. Like what TSC said teachers it is not the teacher who has refused to go to class. Schools are closed due to the Covid-19. If the teacher is called upon to resume teaching, they will do so the following day, so long as conditions are right. The debate is blunt and debased and most are not aware how teachers are engaging learners through online classes and other ways despite schools being closed.