Teachers and their employer will today start a five-day retreat in Naivasha to discuss promotions, performance appraisals among others.
The meeting will be attended by an eight-member team, which will also look at the issue of transfer of teachers outside their home counties.
The meeting was organised after teachers threatened to go on strike, and it will be hoping to create a common understanding between the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) and the Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) on various issues.
Knut Secretary-General Wilson Sossion on Sunday said the union is optimistic that TSC will address issues that have been raised by their members, which he said are fundamental.
“We want our demands to be met by TSC so that we can have a conducive environment in the education sector,” Mr Sossion said.
Some of the demands put forward by Knut include clear guidelines on career progress, which will allow teachers to be promoted across the board.
Knut wants TSC to withdraw the current guidelines that became effective on November 8 last year
“The policy is tied to the performance contracting, which although not opposed by the union, the same has not been carried out within the law and the terms of CBA and the union as opposed to such report being utilised for purposes of appraisals,” he said.
Mr Sossion said the guidelines have replaced the various schemes of service that existed.
“The issue raised herein affect substantially the terms and conditions of service of the teachers. It is a serious labour issue that the union ought to have been fully involved. Promotion of teachers is provided for in law. It is not a policy issue that can be decided by one party with the exclusion of the other party,” Mr Sossion added.
“Therefore, replacing the provisions of the guidelines with a policy paper that was not discussed with other shareholders and approved or otherwise agreed upon is a mockery of the existence of the regulations and shareholders.”
On transfers, Knut wants the policy reviewed. “Delocalisation has occasioned low morale, uncertainties leading to poor performance and adverse effects on families traumatised out of the separation and health deterioration in many reported incidents,” he said.
Knut also want appraisal stopped to allow time to develop new tools.