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Teacher trainees to wait longer as entry grade row persists

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Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Education ministry and the Teachers Service Commission Tuesday failed to strike a conclusive deal on the lowering on entry grade to teachers training colleges (TTC) to D+.

The meeting chaired by Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed at Jogoo House instead agreed to set up a technical team to resolve the matter as directed by the Labour Court on December 20.

About 3,450 teacher trainees selected to join training colleges with lower grades will now have to wait longer. The students are from 27 colleges.

Members of the technical team will be from Teachers Service Commission (TSC), Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec), Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) and Kenya National Qualification Authority.

The meeting was also attended by Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) and Kuppet.

There was heated exchanges between TSC and qualification authority lawyers during the meeting with each party maintaining its hardline position that it has the mandate to lower the entry grade.

Ms Mohamed’s push to have TSC soften its position did not help leading to the decision to set up the team.

TSC team could also not take a position saying it needed to seek the approval of the top leadership of the Commission, which did not attend the meeting.

Ms Mohamed in November ordered that the grades for diploma courses be lowered from a C+ in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) to C- and for certificates from C to D+.

The CS lowered the grades for students from marginalised counties and backdated it to candidates who sat for KCSE from 2006.

This sparked protests from the TSC in a spat that saw the Attorney-General Kihara Kariuki rule the Cabinet Secretary and the authority had no role in determining the entry grade.

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