Thursday, 27 June 2013

Parents protest as strike bites

Learning in government schools was on Wednesday paralysed for the second day as parents threatened to sue the government over the strike.
However, some of the teachers in Murang’a defied the strike and had to be kicked out of class by Kenya National Union of Teachers(Knut) officials.
There was drama in Murang’a Town as Knut officials attempted to flush out teachers at Murang’a Technology Primary School in the afternoon.
The officials accused the tutors of betraying them for failing to join in the strike. But the school headteacher, on learning of the impending action, called the police to restore order.
The teachers hid until the officials left as Knut vowed that no teaching would take place at the school. It was later closed.
In Kisumu, parents threatened to move to court to sue the government for violating children rights by allowing the teachers’ strike to go on.
“This is the seventh strike over the 1997 pay deal. As parents we do not want to hear this anymore. Let the government keep its side of the bargain so that learners are not inconvenienced,” said Mr Jackson Ogweno, an official of the local parents association.
In Nairobi, there was no activity in public schools as both pupils and teachers kept away. A spot check by the Nation showed that gates of city schools, mostly owned by the county government, remained closed.
Headteachers in some schools in Baringo County also began sending their pupils home.
And teachers led by the region chairman Job Kimitei said they would not relent until their demands were met by the government.
The situation was not different in Rift Valley schools.
Learning remained paralysed in public schools in Uasin Gishu County on the second day of the teachers’ strike.
Knut official in Kericho County urged teachers training colleges not to send their students for field attachments in schools. This, they added, may prompt the government to replace striking teachers.
In Nyeri, teachers demonstrated for the second day while criticising Labour and Education Cabinet Secretaries Kazungu Kambi Jacob Kaimenyi respectively.
Teachers braved persistent downpour in Embu to demonstrate along the streets, hitting out at Mr Kambi for disowning their 1997 pay agreement.

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