The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) is set to recruit 5,000 teachers to fill vacant positions both in primary and secondary schools to support the 100 per cent transition of students from primary to secondary schools.
In an advert published in one of the local dailies, the commission wants to recruit 4,000 teachers in secondary schools, 1,000 teachers in primary schools and promotion and deployment of 1,000 already practising teachers.
Additionally, the commission will also need extra teachers to fill in the gap left behind by those exiting the system.
“The commission is also advertising 5,474 vacancies for primary and 1,100 vacancies for secondary schools to replace teachers who existed the service,” reads the advert.
The government has been planning to recruit extra teachers since early this year after engaging the teachers' unions on various occasions.
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In June, TSC Chief Executive Office Dr Nancy Macharia mentioned that the 100 per cent transition increased the demand for teachers in schools where there can be a shortage of at least 10 teachers.
“The 100 per cent transition is a government programme to accelerate access to secondary education. As a result of the programme, many of our youth who would have otherwise missed an opportunity for secondary education are now in school. Due to the huge success in enrolment of learners, many secondary schools have had to start additional streams,” said Macharia earlier this year.
This will require the national Treasury to channel Sh2 billion to employ an additional 5, 000 teachers both in Primary and secondary schools.
However, 5000 teachers are still a small step in the right direction as the country grapples with a national shortage of about 85, 000 teachers, especially in secondary schools.
Even though the country has at least 300,000 trained and registered teachers according to TSC, the education sector still struggles to meet the pupil-teacher ratio of 40:1.
According to TSC, about 44 teachers, retire, die, or resign daily adding to the increased challenge of having a shortage. Low pay, poor working conditions and long working hours also contribute to many teachers exiting the profession.
Last year TSC projected the shortages are expected to rise to 84,478 for secondary schools and 34,941 for primary schools by 2023.