Must one be 50 to be a deputy Principal in Kenyan schools?
This Job Group ‘M’ is Becoming Greatly Elusive to the Young Teachers.
Teachers are stagnating in the job group ‘L’ for decades!
Deputy Principals are the donkeys of schools. They are in charge of discipline, academics and assist in administrative duties for the normal day to day running of the school. This is beside the usual teaching load which depends on the kind of school one is operating in. We know of deputies who have up to 28 lessons in some schools. With the current CBA under the career progressive guidelines (CPG), one must be in job group M to get to the deputy principal position. Now the problem is getting this job group. Job group M is really becoming elusive. This is because rarely does the commission TSC advertise for this job group interviews. And when they do, the positions advertised are so few as compared to the number of applicants. There are thousands and thousands of teachers who have stagnated in one job group for eons! I know of a teacher in my school that has been in job group L for the last thirty years! Now this is unfair and dehumanizing!
Back to the story of becoming a deputy, must one get old and fragile to get this promotion? The rate at which these promotions are slow and irregular, some of us will never get to this ‘heights’ of career development. The commission talks of promoting teachers based on the TPAD (Teacher Professional Appraisal Development tool) that stipulates that the teachers’ subject class mean score in KCSE Exams and the ability to train the students in co-curricular activities as proven by the certificates presented. While this is good, the promotion process appears to be flawed in the sense that it is never fair and transparent. I also happen to know of teachers who have excellent performance records in schools in both academic and co-curricular activities but they have never been considered for this promotion.
Like we said earlier, the deputy heads are tasked with daunting tasks in schools. This without saying needs young energetic people for efficiency. It is obvious that young people with the right guidance are very effective because they got the energy and they are also tech-savvy and quite in touch with the youngsters-the students. They are better placed to handle the discipline issues because they can read the students mind given that they are millennials-the age gap is not that huge! Unfortunately, this will never be realized. The dye has been cast by the commission. The job group M has become a preserve for the few who have either served the commission for eons and they are already tired or those who know people! Is it a wonder that teaching as a profession is not attracting the millennials? It is considered boring and quite unrewarding! Those already in it just view it as a stepping stone for better opportunities. Teachers are ever looking for greener pastures. They are never settled. They are usually on the ready to seize other opportunities that they consider better and fulfilling. I think it is time the commission published the number of young teachers who have left the commission in recent years. The public will be shocked because I can bet that the numbers are overwhelming!
The musings of a Kenyan Teacher.