The teachers service commission yesterday launched stakeholders forum for the teacher professional development. The teachers service commission was seeking advice on how it can improve the program which does not seem to be winning the teachers hearts.

Funding of the program is one of the biggest nightmare for TSC after only a few number of teachers registered with the four service providers who are accredited. The basic education chief administrator last week revealed that only 20,000 teachers have applied for the programme.

The administrator who was speaking in Nandi county said that unskilled teachers are a threat to the implementation of the new curriculum. She added that teachers should seek for funding from county bursaries and CDF to facilitate their training.

TSC received a slew of proposals for teachers to embrace TPD without feeling the financial burden. Stakeholders present presented their proposals and recommendations on the TPD program starting this December.

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The event, held at the CEMASTEA ground in Karen, was also attended by teacher unions Knut (Kenya National Union of Teachers) and Kevota (Kenya Women Teachers Association), among others.

KNUT’s general secretary Collins Oyuu reiterated his support for the program but asked teacher employers to improve teachers’ pay for smooth implementation of the program.

He said that teachers should not be compared with other professionals like doctors and lawyers as such comparisons make the teacher smaller. Kewota president, Dorothy Muthoni urged the TSC to be more engaging in communicating new policies like the TPD.

He challenged the stakeholders to help devise ways of sourcing the funds required to launch the programme. However, the proposals issued include reducing the annual leave allowance for TPD training to reduce the pinch of payment from the monthly salary of teachers.

Teachers earn leave allowance every February based on their work group. Should the proposal be adopted teachers in the lowest job group would lose power. 4,000 which is paid annually as leave allowance.

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However some TPD service providers say they will spread it. 6,000 TPD fee for teachers to make payment easier.

KEMI, one of the teachers training institutes, says it accepts nominations for the program along with Sh. 500 per month. Service providers also say that starting this December the introductory module will be completely online to make them more locally available face-to-face training for teachers.

TSC CEO Dr. Nancy Macharia asked teachers to adopt a program that is geared towards helping both teachers and learners. “I urge my teachers to adopt the TPD program as it is definitely going to be a game changer.

We will engage in strong communication and awareness campaigns to ensure that the program is well understood and benefits the teacher in line with its objectives,” she said during the launch at CEMSTEA in Nairobi.

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Each teacher will have to take six TPD modules over the course of their career and each will take five years to complete Each teacher will have to take six TPD modules over the course of their career and each will take five years to complete.

Macharia said that all teachers of government and private schools will have to take compulsory TPD courses during school holidays at their own expense. “At the end of each module, successful teachers will have their teaching certificates renewed after every five years,” said Macharia.

This means that those who have not taken the refresher course will not be given a teaching license and will not be authorized to teach.

Macharia said that refresher courses will promote competency-based curriculum (CBC). Because the teachers will be equipped with the requisite skills.

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