Reports are coming through that the Teachers Service Commission has moved to mischievously implement a court ruling after finding itself on the bad side of a judgement.
Teacher Unions literally live at the courts, spending inordinate amounts of resources in a battle whose end cannot be said to be on sight.
The departure of one Lengoiboni marked a turning point in the relationship between teachers and their employer.
In came a pair whose tenure has been marked with recurrent strikes and angst. Lydia Nzomo and Nancy Macharia have made decisions which border on gross incompetence.
They rush through policies which are outrightly punitive while expecting total subservience from the teaching fraternity.
There is Tpad! Then there is delocalizatuon. Tpad is a performance measurement tool pushed by Nzomo simply because it was her area of specialization during her studies for higher education.
Tpad as a tool has not worked to improve teacher performance as the items measured are not even in line with the contents of the curriculum being implemented by the teachers.
Macharia has also pushed down the teacher throats a policy of delocalization. This policy was meant to move teachers from their so called comfort zones, dumping in stranger environments as punishment for defying the employer during one of the longest running teacher strikes.
Delocalization is meant to divide teacher families. It is designed to disorient the teacher. To tame him and make him know who is boss.
The net effect of this policy is brocken families. Children are now being taken care of by brocken souls. A teacher is the immediate role model to a child. He must come from a stable home as he seeks to nature the young one. The family is a very important unit in a nation and children must be able to see that this unit works.
The current TSC leadership wants the teacher to appear lost and disrupted.
Today, the teacher only look forward to traveling back to his or her family midweek.
These are policies which only serve to weaken structures from which the young ones learn.
Today, the teaching force is being treated to a new round of hooliganism and intimidation. Teachers in Kenya are poorly paid. Even tea servers at the headquarters earn better than graduates. It is against this backdrop of poor pay that old administrators at TSC decided that teachers work in their home districts.
From their districts, They will work from their own houses. They were even encouraged to build personal houses in the years back.
But that is not the case today. It is total war. A war which TSC feels it must win by all costs.
This week, TSC decided to roll out two sets of payrolls for the teaching force. One set seeks to reward teachers who belong to a union friendly to TSC while another set seeks to bully and disorganise those it feels belong to a hostile union.
TSC has not appreciated that Knut is just fighting for better terms of the entire teaching force. A well paid teacher is a productive teacher. But do they care!
TSC is recovering salary increments it awarded teachers going back two years. The July payroll for half of the teaching force reeks of mischief, if not banditry.
Teachers earned negative salaries with a rider that recovery will be enforced until all cash paid to unionised members under knut are recovered.
This itself is proof that the Lydia Macharia pair do not consider the teacher welfare when making decisions. Punishment remains the sole driver.
This drastic measure can only be counterproductive and it is the learner who will suffer. Teachers will weather the storm as they wait out the battle to drag on im the courts. Calls for a strike are also picking up.
Other union leaders have also signaled to teachers that they will stand shoulder to shoulder when push comes to a shove. COTU couldn’t be more clear on the same.
Natural justice is clear that employees cannot be penalized in such a manner that they lose their earnings.
Schools will soon open for the last term of the year and it is instructive to note that it is also the term of exams, yet TSC does not seem to be awake to these facts.
The mandarins at TSC might believe that they have managed to divide the teaching force but the fact of the matter is that When push comes to shove,again, Teachers will stand together. Attempts at dividing them only show lack of leadership at TSC.
The TSC has lost focus! It is now grounding it’s mandate on pettiness. Managing the teaching force has overwhelmed the current leaders! It is time for a reshuffle. Let a new team run TSC. A team with the wits to manage the teaching force.
Management is not about endless battles. Management is not about short term wins. It is about harnessing the potential of the team working under you to such an extent that they give back their best.
TSC has been reduced to a petty organisation run by petty women. This is not what the spirit of the constitution envisaged when the tsc act was being enacted.
The incompetent women running TSC have turned it into a vengeful organization where orders are balked and teachers treated like objects. One can only wonder what their mission is. Word on the street already has it that a strike is now inevitable. And the public will support the teacher, going by the mood on the ground.
The TSC must embody a larger than life mission. It must not absorb hate. It’s mission must be big enough as to be able to reject pettiness.
TSC must recruit new managers and the new guys will have a duty to restructure the entire body.
It must also rebrand in outlook and make itself teacher friendly. Teaching is a service. It is not a war. Teaching is not ending tomorrow, it is forever. The government must now look beyond Lydia Nzomo and her Macharia partner.