TSC, teachers union send mixed messages on appraisals

February 23, 2016 3:23 pm
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Sossion in January directed head teachers not to submit to appraisals until an agreement was reached between itself and TSC on how the exercise would be carried out/FILE
Sossion in January directed head teachers not to submit to appraisals until an agreement was reached between itself and TSC on how the exercise would be carried out/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 23 – The Teachers Service Commission has denied agreeing to halt teacher performance appraisals in public schools that commenced in January.

TSC Head of Communication Kamotho Kihumba told Capital FM News that no such agreement was reached between itself and the Kenya National Union of Teachers with whom they are engaged in a Ministry of Labour mandated conciliation process.

Overview
  • Sossion in January directed head teachers not to submit to appraisals until an agreement was reached between itself and TSC on how the exercise would be carried out.
  • The performance appraisals are only the latest bone of contention between the union and employer who were required by the Court of Appeal in November, to negotiate a Collective Bargaining Agreement.
  • The CBA negotiations however stalled after KNUT accused TSC of acting in bad faith by failing to table a counter offer to their 50 to 60 percent minimum basic pay rise demand.

Kihumba was responding to communication from KNUT Secretary General Wilson Sossion who stated in a press release that the two parties had agreed to “drop their hostilities and consequently TSC should halt with immediate effect the rolling out of performance contracting and appraisals pending the outcome of the conciliation process.”

But Kihumba distanced the commission from the communication and said the lawyers who represented their party at a conciliation meeting held on Monday, did not give such an undertaking.

“If it was indeed true that such a deal had been struck then wouldn’t the communication have come from the conciliator as opposed to one of the parties?” he posed.

The two parties are engaged in conciliation talks aimed at averting industrial action which KNUT has threatened to take should the TSC fail to involve them in the appraisal process.

Sossion in January directed head teachers not to submit to appraisals until an agreement was reached between itself and TSC on how the exercise would be carried out.

“KNUT is not opposed to any international practice which will assist to raise the education standards. The reason we are calling on the commission to put the exercise on hold is to agree on the format to be used. Anything short of this will have violated the Constitution which encourages equal participation by stakeholders.”

READ: KNUT directs members to resist appraisals, performance contracts for now

The performance appraisals are only the latest bone of contention between the union and employer who were required by the Court of Appeal in November, to negotiate a Collective Bargaining Agreement.

The CBA negotiations however stalled after KNUT accused TSC of acting in bad faith by failing to table a counter offer to their 50 to 60 percent minimum basic pay rise demand.

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