The Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) has opposed the planned nationwide strike plan by the junior secondary school (JSS) intern teachers.
Knut is instead asking the teachers to renew the internship contract for a second year as they look forward to be confirmed in 2025.
The intern teachers who have continued to demonstrate countrywide to force the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) to convert them to pnp had planned to have a national strike on 12th December 2023.
However the strike plan flopped as the date collided with the national Jamhuri day. The teachers are planning to paralyse learning in January when schools reopen.
They are calling for their employment on permanent terms after serving for one year on contract.
Knut secretary general, Collins Oyuu, however says the teachers are being incited to go on strike.
He pointed fingers at the Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) for hoodwinking the contract teachers to go on strike.
“If you want to conduct a demonstration come out to the streets. Don’t misuse these young teachers. We want to advise our colleagues in the other union movements to be steadfast and forthright in handling teachers. And they must be very sincere,” Oyuu said.
The Knut boss spoke during a National Executive Council meeting at the head office.
Oyuu said there is also a group of senior school principals signing recommendation letters to KUPPET for teachers who ought to be in Knut.
“Who gave room for this Principal from a senior school to come and sign a form for a teacher in the comprehensive school? We are watching and we shall not allow you to muscle the law,” he said.
“How for instance do you engage an intern who is not employed as permanent and pensionable to run into the streets? I was talking to some of them this morning, they don’t even know what they are doing.”
Oyuu said what the interns know is that somebody came and incited them to go the streets.
“And I warned them, go to the streets and you shall no longer be an intern. What will you do?” Oyuu said.
He urged the interns to appear before their union representatives and present their grievances.
TSC recently revealed that it will convert a total of 46,000 intern teachers on payroll to pnp in 2025.
TSC CEO Dr. Nancy Macharia said they current don’t have money to absorb the teachers on pnp payroll.
The Commission has asked school heads to start processing of renewing contract for intern teachers employed in February.
The teachers are required to renew their accident cover and submit it as evidence of contract renewal.
Yesterday President William Ruto said the government will spend Sh47 billion to hire 56,000 more teachers.
In addition, Ruto said the government will spend Sh24 billion on upgrading facilities for junior secondary schools.
Speaking during the 60th celebration of Jamhuri Day at Uhuru Garden in Nairobi, the president said the money will be used for the construction of classes and infrastructure for JSSs.
Last week, the Ministry of Education said the government had allocated Sh3.9 billion for the construction of an additional 15,021 classrooms for JSS by 2025 to accommodate the first Grade 9 learners.
Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu said the World Bank will provide an additional Sh9 billion towards building 9,000 classrooms.