Irene Githinji @gitshee
The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) yesterday said it has interdicted 1,077 teachers in the last eight years for sexually abusing learners. The teachers were removed from the register between 2010 and 2018.
Six counties recorded the highest number of teachers disciplined for what TSC describes as immoral behaviour towards learners and are also barred from practising in private schools. Top on the list is Kakamega with 88 cases, Kisii with 61 and Homa Bay with 60 cases.
The fourth county is Kitui with 53 cases while Bungoma and Siaya had 47 and 46, respectively.
Chairperson Nancy Macharia stated that TSC will continue to take disciplinary action against teachers found guilty of the offence.
Pursuant to Section 46 of the TSC Act as read together with regulation156 of the Code of Regulations for teachers, Macharia revealed, 279 of those removed from the register applied for review of their cases during the period 2010-2017.
Out of these, Nyanza had the highest number of 60 followed by Western with 56, Rift Valley came third with 55 cases while Eastern had 53 cases. Central, Coast and North Eastern had 38, 15 and two cases respectively.
TSC heard and upheld its decision to remove the 279 teachers from the register and gazetted deregistration of 122 as a matter of public interest and further recommended deregistration of 33 teachers last year.
“A teacher may be removed from the register if the teacher commits or engages in immoral behaviour with or towards a learner. Immoral behaviour includes but not limited to sexual intercourse or sexual abuse, sodomy, lesbianism, sexual harassment or flirtation,” Macharia said.
She made the presentation to the Senate education committee at which function other stakeholders including clerics and trade unionists attended.
The move comes against the backdrop of concerns over the rising cases of teenage pregnancies in schools, which stakeholders said requires urgent action as it is getting out of hand.
But even as TSC takes action on teachers over immoral behaviour, Macharia said only two per cent of the teachers are involved while other people are responsible for 98 per cent of the cases.
She said a majority of pregnancies in schools affect learners in day schools.
As part of curbing teenage pregnancies, Macharia called for urgent need to lay emphasis on morals and values.