Teachers have been asked to suspend plans to hold a strike until national examinations are completed.
The Teachers Service Commission, through their lawyer, wrote to the Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers on February Wednesday.
Kuppet had given TSC a seven-day ultimatum to reopen salary negotiations, failure to which they would take the next step.
Commission lawyer Calvin Anyuor said this year’s tight school calendar should not be subjected to any distraction.
“Any activity which may disrupt learning must be avoided at all costs,” Anyuor said.
However, the commission promised to engage with relevant stakeholders in government to respond to the demands made by Kuppet.
“The commission is currently consulting with the relevant government agencies before reverting to the union with its clear position to pave way for bipartite negotiations” he said.
Education CS George Magoha also asked the teachers to be patient until learners finish the national exams.The exams are set to kick off on March 7, 2022.
Magoha said children should not be subjected to any distractions during their exams.
“Our children are not like chess to be played with, they belong to everybody,” Magoha said.
He also added that it is the teachers’ democratic right to take industrial action.
“I want to plead with them to suspend that strike or they can issue it immediately after exams, it will be fair to the children,” he said.
Kuppet Secretary general Akello Misori said teachers have been yearning to receive better pay.
“The union is left with no option but to convene our organs to explore all avenues open to us and guide our members in their quest for a salary increment,” Misori said.
A number of demands were made to the commission to be fulfilled for the 2021-2025 Collective Bargaining Agreement.
The teachers want a salary increment of between 30 to 70 per cent for the highest-paid and lowest-paid teachers respectively.
“The lowest-paid teacher’s salary should rise from Sh34,995 to Sh59,425 while the highest should rise from Sh118,242 to Sh153,715,” he said.
Commuter allowance is expected to be raised by between thirty to seventy per cent.
“From Sh5,000 to Sh8,500 and from Sh16,000 to Sh20,800 for the lowest and highest paid teachers respectively,” he said.
The union also requested for leave allowance to be equivalent to one month’s salary for every grade.
They further called for harmonised house allowance across all grades with a township allowance awarded to teachers in urban areas.