Some 14,613 teachers have been moved and are expected to report to their new stations in mass transfer plan, just two weeks to the reopening of schools.
Teachers Service Commission (TSC) in a circular dated January 9, to Regional Directors, said the transfers were based on request by the teachers. TSC Chief Executive Officer Nancy Macharia said the transfers have been aligned to address understaffing and also correct staffing imbalance across various counties.
In the transfer list released, some 10,934 will be primary school teachers, 1,948 primary head teachers and 1,316 secondary school teachers. Also affected are 226 secondary school principals and 189 deputy head teachers.
Dr Macharia said all affected principals must report to their new stations by Monday next week, January 16, 2023.
"The Commission approved a number of teacher transfer requests across counties to be effected in January, 2023. You are required to transfer all head teachers and principals with immediate effect to report to schools on Monday, January 16, 2023," Macharia said.
The rest of the teachers will report on January 23, 2023 when schools open for the first term in the new academic calendar. Kenya National Union of Teachers Secretary General Collins Oyuu welcomed the move saying the process was long overdue with.
"Most of our members were basically the principals, head teachers and deputy head teachers. That form the big chunk of the teachers who were delocalised," Oyuu said.
He said most of the teachers were victims of delocalisation policy which has since been reversed. Oyuu said while teachers can be transferred for various reasons including administrative or on request, some past transfers had been punitive.
"These transfers must not be punitive by any standards. Teachers should always feel there is genuine reason they are being moved from one station to another," said Mr Oyuu.
He urged TSC should ensure those who are being transferred are taken to places where they can work and produce results, not to places where they feel punished.
"Most of the teachers wasted Fridays and Mondays travelling to their rural homes and back and now they will be able to make good use of the time."
Dr Macharia said another 120 teachers who had made transfer requests were not placed and the will be managed when the case is provided they address teacher shortage and plug staff imbalance in the requested schools.
"The board approved the transfer of 14,613 out of the 14,733 total applications received as at November 30, 2022. The remaining 120 teachers could not get possible matches to replace them in their current stations," Macharia added.
Dr Macharia observed that 12,019 applications are to be effected by Regional Directors while inter-regional transfers consist of 2,594 teachers. Broken down Rift Valley has the highest number of teachers who will be transferred with 3,962 already approved.
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Of these 3,006 will be primary teachers, 580 head teachers, 260 secondary teachers, 48 deputy head teachers and 68 secondary school principals. Eastern region is second with some 3, 578 to be moved.
Of these are 2,740 primary teachers, 434 head teachers, 314 secondary school teachers, 39 deputy head teachers and 51 secondary school principals.
In Western, some 1,618 primary teachers, 196 head teachers, 154 secondary school teachers, 30 deputy head teachers and 5 secondary school principals will go to new stations.
In Nyanza, some 1,084 primary teachers, 220 head teachers, 64 secondary teachers, 20 deputy head teachers and 68 secondary school principals have been transferred.
And in Coast region, some 444 primary teachers, 98 head teachers, 10 secondary teachers, 6 deputy head teachers and 2 secondary school principals have been approved for transfer
In Central some 296 primary teachers, 59 head teachers, 118 secondary teachers, seven deputy head teachers and 11 secondary school principals will move.
Dr Macharia however said that some inter county transfers will be done directly from the TSC Headquarters .
She said this will effect 1,746 primary school teachers, 361 head teachers, 396 secondary school teachers, 39 deputy head teachers and 52 secondary school principals.
Macharia urged the Regional Directors to ensure the teacher shortage in most understaffed schools and counties and gender balance are considered in addressing the teacher imbalance during the exercise.
"Ensure that teachers are posted to schools they have requested and where applicable gender parity needs to be taken into consideration to foster gender inclusivity," she said.
"Post heads and deputy heads of institutions to schools corresponding with their current school category, size of the schools and level of enrolment and school performance."
Macharia also directed that in future, all newly recruited teachers and any posting after leave be done to in relation to the demand and shortage.