Following a stakeholder meeting that took place between the Teachers Service Commission (TSC), Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT), Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET), and other education stakeholders like the Kenya Primary Schools Heads Association, teachers working in Taita Taveta and Wundanyi Sub-counties are set to start receiving hardship allowances amongst other benefits.
TSC vice-chair Leila Ali said TSC agreed with the stakeholders to fast-track the process of allocating the allowances and solving the challenges facing the teachers. She Said this during the meeting in Mwatate.
Leila Ali said that the process is now at an advanced stage, and they are hoping that it will soon be finalized. She added that TSC would also look into the issue of teachers’ shortage in the area and the promotion of deserving teachers.
TSC vice-chair further asked all stakeholders to play their part in making learning a success. KUPPET Taita Taveta executive secretary Shedrack Mutungi said that although the area had been neglected and side-lined, the wrong has now been corrected.
‘We have been gunning for this since 2011, and we are over the moon and happy the long-standing wrong has been corrected,’ Mutungi said as he hailed the move by TSC
He added that only teachers in Voi Sub County and other parts of Mwatate were entitled to hardship allowances of 30% of their basic salaries in the past.
Hardship allowances include acute hardship, deplorable road network, harsh climatic conditions, water scarcity, and rampant human-wildlife conflict.
We are now waiting for the TSC gazette notice to ensure the process is completed soon,’ said Mutungi, who promised to follow up on the issue to fast track.
He revealed that the disparity in allowances had caused a rift between the teaching fraternities and negatively affected education delivery in the area. We have further called for a quarter of the teaching staff to be considered for promotion. We want priority to be given to local teachers,’ he said.
Teachers working in hardship areas get a special allowance called ‘hardship allowance.’ TSC pays extra allowances (hardship allowances) to teachers working in areas classified as hardship
Hardship allowance is therefore paid to compensate for the cost of living for teachers working in areas designated as hardship.
The Teachers working in hardship areas face many challenges, from lack of water and flooding to hostile living conditions characterized by constant spates of attacks.
TSC hardship allowance varies from one group or grade to another, with newly recruited teachers receiving the lowest perk