The Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) now wants an urgent review of the 2021-2025 Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) to cushion teachers from the workload occasioned by the introduction of the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) and other reforms in the education sector.
Speaking in Mombasa during the 12th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the KNUT Kilindini branch, National Chairman Patrick Karinga, announced that a meeting has been scheduled with the employer to look into the CBA.
“We have taken the trajectory of addressing the teachers’ issues with the employer TSC, and we have agreed on several issues that are going on. Right now, we are in transition whereby we are getting more work as far as the changes and the reforms that are there in the Ministry of Education.” Karinga said.
The Chairman said, because of the workload that comes with CBC they will be pushing for a pay rise through the review of the CBA.
“We are just asking 60 percent pay rise of our salaries because of the workload that has been added from what we have been having.” He said.
On the recruitment of teachers through internship, Karinga urged the government to first absorb teachers recruited last year as interns on permanent and pensionable terms as a way of motivating them.
“We have the interns who are being recruited at the moment yet we have our teachers who were recruited about a year ago and they haven’t been absorbed to permanent and pensionable terms.” The Chairman said.
On the ongoing anti-government demonstrations staged by the opposition Azimio, Karinga said the teaching fraternity cannot afford the disturbances, urging the government to look for a lasting solution to the standoff.
Also present was Jomvu Member of Parliament Badi Twalib who echoed the KNUT Chairman’s sentiments on the reviewing of the CBA.
“They signed when the economy was doing well, currently things are so hard. They should think about reviewing the CBA for it to suit the current economic situation and be of help to our teachers.” Twalib said.
The legislator further advocated for the harmonization of Mombasa teachers’ house allowances to be in tandem with their Nairobi counterparts.
The lawmaker said the new regulations by TSC for Head Teachers and Principals to have degrees should not touch on experienced teachers who have served for many years.
“They should not introduce the requirement of head teachers to be degree holders. A head teacher who has served for 20 or 30 years has lots of experience.” Twalib said, adding that volunteer teachers should be given priority by TSC when vacancies arise.