Performance contracts are not intended to punish teachers, a government official has said.
They are only aimed at boosting service delivery in public schools, acting Education permanent secretary George Godia said on Monday as he urged teachers to embrace them.
Prof Godia said all civil servants and workers in the private sector were also signing performance contracts.
“The ministry move was not intended to punish you, but to ensure that you deliver quality services and complete the syllabus in time for the benefit of our children,” Prof Godia said.
Speaking at Samoei High School in Nandi East District, Nandi County, during the Education Day for Tindiret constituency, he assured teachers that the government was not forcing them to sign the contracts.
But teachers unions have rejected the contracts and told their members not to sign them.
Nandi South Knut secretary Stephen Misoi and his Nandi Central counterpart Zippora Kering told Prof Godia that teachers would not agree to work on contract since they currently handled more than 65 children in a single class.
They said performance contracting was both punitive and meant to frustrate teachers who worked round the clock to deliver services.
Said Mr Misoi: “Teachers in Nandi County are not ready to sign performance contracts and unless they are suspended, teachers would call for mass action and boycott classes.”
The education official added that the county’s second place ranking in last year’s KCPE examination results was enough proof that teachers were doing their work.
Mr Misoi said that instead of imposing performance contracts on them, the government should employ more teachers to plug the biting shortage.
The Knut officials also asked the Education ministry to investigate the rising cases of suicides in schools.
But the PS said that a high number of students were getting involved in alcohol and drug abuse and asked teachers and parents to monitor them and offer counselling.