Barring all else, teachers must be role models. The place of a teacher in molding individual’s character and how they interpret issues from an early stage cannot be overstated. Indeed, pupils spend most of their childhood in the hands of teachers.
For this reason, teachers who conduct themselves in ways that bring disrepute to the teaching profession should be granted no quarters. Thus, decisive action by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) in interdicting 160 teachers over conduct unbecoming is welcome.
The interdicted teachers are accused of interrupting, or outright refusal to attend training on the new Competency-Based Curriculum a few weeks ago at the instigation of the Kenya National Union of Teachers that is opposed to the CBC on what could, at best, be flimsy grounds. It is not enough that Knut should sabotage a worthy cause ostensibly because it was not consulted.
If truly teachers felt the CBC was not worth the bother, there exist conflict resolution mechanism they should have resorted to, not the public display of rowdiness as though they were ordinary goons on the loose. When youngsters see adults resort to violence to resolve disputes, they grow up knowing this is the only means available.
For insubordination and failure to subscribe to their code of conduct, these teachers must be punished. Discipline in whatever sphere of work or business is not negotiable, it is simply enforceable. TSC has followed the right channel by giving the errant teaches up to May 26 to submit their defenses, failure to which they face dismissal.