What you should know: Principal Secretary Dr Margaret Mwakima says Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges are set to benefit following the Government’s plan to recruit 3,000 tutors, Kuppet and Knut face opposition over mandatory training of teachers as a lobby represented by Martha Omollo says they will petition Parliament to ensure the TPD program is halted.
1. About 3, 000 tutors to be hired to boost staff numbers in TVETS
While admitting that Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions were facing challenges ranging from a shortage of tutors and facilities, Principal Secretary Margaret Mwakima yesterday made it clear that the middle-level colleges are set to benefit following the Government’s plan to recruit 3,000 instructors.
“The number of TVET centres have steadily risen from 51 in 2013 to 238 currently, and there is a need to increase the trainers base,” said PS Margaret Mwakima during the commissioning of a driving course at Ramogi Institute of Advanced Technology (RIAT).
Dr Mwakina noted that there was a need to invest in TVETs because they played a significant role in filling the skill gaps in the communities. She also added that her office will allocate funds for each middle-level college depending on their need, in collaboration with TVET heads across the country.
2. Knut, Kuppet face opposition over mandatory training of teachers
The Kenya National Teachers Group, a lobby, has come out to the rescue of a section of teachers who are against the introduction of a mandatory retraining professional development program by TSC running for 30 years with six modules each lasting five years and in which teachers will be required to pay Sh6,000 for each year.
The lobby has said they will petition Parliament to ensure the TPD program is stopped or completely thrown out. They have even threatened to push for the formation of a third union other than Knut and Kuppet to represent the issues in disagreement.
This is after the Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) and Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) heads graced the launch, an indication they endorse the programme. The heads have also remained silent despite teachers’ outcry.
In September, Teachers Service Commission rolled out a professional development course, commonly known as TPD, that will see teachers renew their teaching licenses after every five years. A move opposed by a section of teachers.
“Since our employer has gone silent over this weird policy, we have constituted a pressure group to act on behalf of teachers on TSC payroll touching on matters teachers’ welfare, professional development and career progression,” said Martha Omollo, the group’s spokesperson.
“We are demanding the immediate resignation of non-teachers leadership in the union, including Omboko Milemba, Ronald Tanui and Bungoma Woman Rep Catherine Wambilianga,” she added.
Omolo also emphasised the need to have a separation of roles at the TSC, the commission as an employer, while the role of the regulator is handed over to another body.
“TSC cannot be an employer and a regulator at the same time. We, therefore, call on Parliament to consider separation of duties,” she said.
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