The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) now wants the 340,000 teachers under its payroll to understand their job description and effectively perform their duties.
In a comprehensive circular released this week, TSC has instructed its teaching staff to “go beyond the classroom experience to build a holistic child”.
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A strict routine of the teachers’ roles will count during promotions, which TSC says will be done based on “satisfactory performance”.
The details are contained in Carrier Progression Guidelines for Teachers released this week. Under the guidelines, teachers will now be required to provide guidance and counseling services to all learners and instill norms and values for harmonious co-existence of the children.
Shock awaits teachers who turn up in schools in unkempt hair, torn shirts and unpolished shoes. TSC wants all its staff to serve as role models and maintain students’ discipline to create a conducive environment for learning.
For weak students, TSC wants teachers to organise remedial actions to support learners with performance gaps, evaluate them and prepare them for national examinations.
TSC Chief Executive Officer Nancy Macharia said the guidelines provide all basic requirements for career progression, training and promotion of teachers.
“These guidelines provide for policies and procedures that have standardised teachers’ professional development,” said Dr Macharia.
The document has been sent to all TSC County education officials, principals of secondary schools, heads of primary institutions, diploma and teacher training colleges.
Kenya Secondary School Heads Association (Kessha) and Kenya Primary School Heads Association (Kepsha) have also been copied on the letter.
What will however catch teachers’ attention is the magnitude of expectations the employer has set and attached their performance on for promotions.
Overall, promotions will be based on existence of vacancies, meeting the minimum qualifications per grade, attainment of relevant teacher professional development (TPD) modules and experience.
Macharia says the guidelines have provided clear pathways with job descriptions/specifications provided at all levels.
The document spells out the day-to-day expectation of the ordinate primary teachers, senior teachers, deputy head teachers and heads of institutions. The same has been done to secondary schools and teacher training colleges.
Overall, each teacher will be expected to prepare lesson plans, lesson notes, timetables, schemes of work and maintain academic standards in school to ensure the syllabus is covered in time for evaluation. Teachers will also be expected to teach the subjects of specialisation and impart knowledge, skills and attitudes to the learners.
In addition to these, they will be expected to evaluate learners and prepare them for national examinations.
For primary school teachers, they will be required to introduce new ideas and programmes to ensure improvement in teaching and learning in their subjects of specialisation.
They will also be expected to ensure consistency and improvement in curriculum delivery through teamwork and collaborative planning.
This means teachers who do not coordinate with their colleagues will be scored poorly and this will affect their promotions. TSC also wants teachers to participate in workshops, seminars and symposiums to share ideas, and enhance knowledge in their subject areas.
The exercise, TSC believes, will build into the overall learning of the child.
For senior teachers, they will be expected to organise school based and zonal subject panels to facilitate sharing of knowledge, innovations and new trends.
This level of teachers will also be tasked with the responsibility of coordinating gender mainstreaming issues for teachers and learners in curricular and co-curricular activities. Senior teachers will also be expected to ensure discipline in school is maintained and mediate any disputes. They will supervise cleanliness of the school compound and ensure the learners are tidy.
Deputy head teachers will coordinate and provide guidance and counseling services to the teachers, non-teaching staff and learners.
They will be answerable to the head teacher for the development and implementation of the curriculum, education policies and programmes.
In the absence of the head teacher, the deputy will be in-charge of the institution.
Deputies will ensure teachers, non-teaching staff and learners maintain discipline and supervise the implementation of schemes of work and lessons plans by teachers.
They will appraise teachers and assist heads promote harmonious relations with the local community, parents and private sector organisations.
Head teachers are also expected to teach. TSC guidelines expects them to, just like ordinary teachers, prepare lesson plans, lesson notes, timetables, schemes of work and maintain academic standards
Head teachers will in addition to the management roles, ensure health, safety of learners and security of institutional resources.
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