Public primary school teachers are attending junior secondary school lessons even without being deployed by Teachers Service Commission (TSC).
This according to the teachers is to help address the severe teacher shortage as well as help the unattended learners.
In some counties like Kwale, Siaya, Kiambu, Vihiga and Meru, the TSC County Directors of Education asked the primary school headteachers to use the available to ensure is going on in junior secondary section.
Some headteachers who are also acting Principals in junior secondary schools allocated subjects for P1 teachers to teach in Grade 7.
Ministry of Education stated that students in Junior Secondary Schools will take up to twelve subjects, this is an increase of six more as compared to the 8-4-4 system.
The grade seven learners, who are the first cohort on the new curriculum, will have an option of choosing two other subjects aside from the compulsory twelve.
The 12 subjects are; English, mathematics, pre-technical studies, Kiswahili, Integrated Science, Social Studies and Business Studies.
Others are Agriculture, Religious Education (IRE, HRE, CRE), Health Education, Sports and Physical education, and life skills.
TSC recruited 30,550 teachers for junior secondary but it needs at least 61,000 for the same. TSC CEO Dr Nancy Macharia said they will deploy primary school teachers to help close the gap.
“While the teacher establishment for Grade Seven level is 61,000 (at least two teachers per class), the commission had recruited 30,550 teachers (one teacher per class), bringing the teacher shortage at Grade Seven to 30,550.” said Macharia.
Knut already warned primary school teachers against teaching in junior secondary school without being officially deployed by TSC.
Knut secretary general, Collins Oyuu, also asked TSC to promote P1 teachers to teach in junior secondary unconditionally.
Addressing the press in Kisumu, Oyuu stated that some of the P1 teachers have upgraded to Diploma courses and higher Diplomas and can teach grade 7. He added that some of the teachers have Degrees and shouldn’t be sidelined.
“Why do we want to use academic stratification to deny teachers who have worked hard and upgraded their skills through advanced learning, why?’’ he posed
Last week Macharia revealed that the Commission plans to promote a total of 36,829 teachers from Monday.
Of these 10,833 are primary school teachers who will be promoted through deployment to teach in junior secondary school.
She said the promotions will be effected from Monday since the identified candidates have met the requisite qualifications for deployment.
While appearing before the National Assembly’s Education Committee chaired by Hon Julius Melly (Tinderet), Macharia told MPs that TSC was currently mapping the teachers after they applied for promotion through its online platform.
“The mapping process of primary school teachers eligible to teach in junior secondary schools is a continuous process and verification of the mapped files is still ongoing to identify more teachers eligible to be posted to junior secondary schools,” she told legislators.
However Macharia who was accompanied by TSC Chairperson Jamleck Muturi and other commissioners, says so far they have identified 7,282 teachers for deployment.
“The country needs to know if there are any plans to promote teachers currently teaching in primary schools and deploy them to Junior Secondary Schools. And if yes, what is the number of tutors that will be elevated ?” posed the Committee Chairperson.
“TSC has through the verification of personal files; identified 7,282 primary school teachers with requisite qualifications to teach in secondary schools as eligible for deployment to Junior Secondary Schools,” responded Ms Macharia.
According to the commission, qualification for deployment to JSS include a Diploma in Education, Bachelor’s degree in Education, at least a C+(Plus) mean grade in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KSCE) examination or its equivalent and at least C+ (Plus) in the two teaching subjects at KCSE or its equivalent.
At university, one must have studied at least eight units in each of the two teaching subjects.
P1 teachers with Degree will move at job grade C2 while those with Diploma will move at job grade C1. The teachers will move to next job group automatically after completing three years.
Macharia said the teachers will help reduce the teaching load currently causing headache in public junior secondary schools.