Understaffed and Overworked JSS Teachers

Understaffed and Overworked JSS Teachers

Understaffed and Overworked JSS Teachers

According to the Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET), newly hired Junior Secondary School (JSS) teachers are occasionally asked to teach primary school classes in violation of their job requirements. Sam Opondo, the Siaya Branch’s executive secretary, said that this behavior is inconsistent with their responsibilities and that sometimes JSS teachers are required to teach elementary school classes and subjects for which they haven’t received proper training.

In some schools, there are strained relationships between institution heads and JSS  instructors, which may be caused by non-graduate head teachers feeling inferior, according to KUPPET. Most newly hired JSS teachers were expected to work in secondary schools due to  the 8-4-4 curriculum.

A JSS teacher who was present at the Siaya County KUPPET Branch AGM expressed frustration, noting that many of them were having issues and worried that P1-qualified heads would be experiencing inferiority complexes.

Opondo underlined the value of professionalism among JSS coworkers and urged institution heads to uphold administrative order, professionalism, and support for JSS teachers.

Additionally, he made note of the fact that teachers at junior high schools today frequently teach more than 10 topics per day due to a lack of staff. When they are already struggling with the burden in JSS, forcing them to teach extra courses in elementary school is viewed as a violation of their rights.The KUPPET Siaya Branch emphasized how many JSS institutions lack necessary resources and facilities, which makes teaching practical skills difficult or impossible. They also expressed criticism of schools paying JSS teachers meager salaries for work performed off-campus.

Speaking anonymously, a second JSS educator discussed the difficulties in guaranteeing students’ safety when traveling considerable distances to and from senior high schools for practical sessions.

As a result of the demanding environment, Vivian, an intern who began teaching a Junior Secondary School class in Bondo Subcounty in August 2023, shared her experiences of teaching multiple subjects and frequently going without lunch.Robert Ouko, the chairman of KUPPET in Siaya County, urged all members to turn to the group for assistance when they were having problems, pointing out that KUPPET is a source of support and empowerment for educators.

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