Teachers in limbo as KNUT & KUPPET  Squabble Over Salary Increase.

Teachers in limbo as KNUT & KUPPET  Squabble Over Salary Increase.

Teachers in limbo as KNUT & KUPPET  Squabble Over Salary Increase.

Teachers in limbo as KNUT & KUPPET  Squabble Over Salary Increase.

The Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) and Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET) leaders have been at odds over planned  compensation increases by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC). The specifics of a collective bargaining agreement prepared by the Teachers  Service Commission (TSC), which aimed to provide the lowest-paid teachers a 2.4% pay raise, are at the heart of the debate.

The TSC also suggested a 9.5% raise for the highest-paid teachers, which would be paid out before a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) was discussed. The TSC proposal would have increased teachers’ pay by between Ksh1,076 and Ksh3,000. In contrast, SRC, under the direction of its chairperson Lyn Mengich, had proposed an increase of between 7 and 10%. These offers, according to KUPPET, are too low for its members, hence they should be rejected.

KUPPET demanded a 30% overall wage rise during the meetings on Tuesday, August 22, to discuss the salary review for teachers.The 30% hike, according to the argument, would protect teachers from the rising expense of living. KUPPET further emphasized that other civil officials, such as doctors and nurses, received bigger pay raises from the government.

As the TSC proposal was still uncertain, KUPETT Secretary General Akello Misori criticized KNUT for accepting the offer, saying that doing so amounted to betraying the teaching fraternity. “The proposal that SRC put forth is entirely different from what TSC offered, so we are not being told the truth about the salary increment,” a witness said.The President has also been discussing an entirely separate proposition at the same time. With people who mistreat us and act in bad faith, it is difficult to bargain,” Misori complained.

Collins Oyuu, the secretary general of KNUT, said that TSC has recognized the difficulties teachers face. The commission, however, asserted that due to financial constraints, it was unable to raise pay. The Kenya National Union of Teachers applauds the 2.4% to 9.5% increase. Nothing has been changed because the top earner will receive 2.4% of the total and the lowest earner would receive 9.5%, according to Oyuu.The head of KNUT backed TSC and President William Ruto’s administration, pointing out that the State had been very thoughtful in organizing and making the wage increases available.

Oyuu urged their KUPPET counterparts to engage in negotiations and accept Lyn Mengich’s Salaries and Remuneration Commission’s proposed pay increase. “I don’t believe it is appropriate to assert that the Teachers Service Commission has taken money from the teachers that is theirs. That is untrue, said Oyuu in response to KUPPET.In order to ensure higher long-term advantages for teachers, KNUT also requested that the Salaries and Remuneration Commission revise the initial proposal. “We won’t accept anything the Salaries and Remuneration Commission sends our way. After all, what good is negotiating if the original recommendations are not followed through on? As was previously indicated, the 7 to 10% must be agreed upon by the employer and the unions, according to Oyuu.

In contrast, KUPPET forewarned that if the government failed to put forth a favorable plan that would entice the teachers, it would respond in kind.The deadline for them to present concrete ideas that we can discuss is Monday, August 28, according to KUPETT Secretary General Akello Misori.The lowest-paid teachers in the TSC, in Grade B5, make about Ksh21,756, while those in Grades C3, C4, and C5 make over Ksh43,154. Principals and vice principals in grades D1, D2, D3, D4, and D5 make between Ksh80,000 and Ksh160,000 annually.On Wednesday, August 23, President William Ruto suggested that TSC promote teachers who have displayed excellent performance during his remarks at the National Music Festival in Nakuru.

According to Ruto, such promotions will boost teachers’ spirits and motivate them to work more and more thoroughly. President Ruto said, “I think they deserve that promotion because they went above and beyond their call of duty.”

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