Boost hiring of teachers
The decision by the Teachers Service Commission to employ about 9,000 new teachers, though a step in the direction, falls far below the real need in the schools. With a shortfall of 155,000 teachers, this will hardly have an impact on the secondary and primary schools that are reeling under a severe staff shortage.
Considering the TSC’S ambitious plan to achieve a 100 per cent secondary school transition rate, the 9,000 new teachers will be just a drop in the ocean.
However, the TSC’S hands are, literally, tied by allocation of meagre funds for the recruitment. It had asked the government for Sh8.3 billion to enable the hiring of 12,626 secondary school teachers every year for the next four years, bringing the total to 50,504. This would have made a difference in the pursuit to boost the transition rate. But the government gave it only Sh4.7 billion.
The TSC has no choice but to make do with the little money that is available instead of waiting for the ideal sum, which might not be realised as the government grapples with lack of funds in these difficult economic times. However, the acute teacher shortage is bound to have serious consequences, the most immediate being undermining the quality of teaching and learning.
To get the best out of education, and lay the foundation for future quality manpower across the country, more resources should be made available to the TSC.