The Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) has denied reports Early Childhood Development and Education (ECDE) teachers are set to earn lower salaries than the minimum wage capped at Sh15,120 following a proposed salary structure change by the state agency.
SRC termed the report as deceiving while noting that its authors used basic pay instead of the gross salary to calculate what ECDE teachers will be taking home if the salary changes are implemented.
“The reports were based on basic salary instead of the gross salary, and thus, misleading. SRC hereby clarifies that in December 2021, it advised a gross remuneration for the lowest cadre of ECDE teachers based in Nairobi (Cluster 1) receiving between Sh14,961 and Sh15,842, while those in Cluster 4 (other areas) receiving between Sh13,211 and Sh14,092,” read the SRC statement.
“This advice considered affordability and fiscal sustainability of the wage bill for county governments. Upon a request from county governments, SRC issued a clarification on 13 January 2023 reiterating its earlier position on the remuneration and benefits of ECDE teachers.”
SRC added it is currently reviewing the remuneration for all public officers, including ECDE teachers, under the third remuneration review cycle, and which shall be issued by June 2023.
“In line with our mandate of setting, reviewing and advising on the remuneration and benefits in the public service, SRC will continue to engage and respond to stakeholders on the matter, as appropriate,” said SRC.
The Kenya Union of Pre-Primary Education Teachers (KUNOPPET) has protested over the controversial proposal from the SRC.
While addressing the media on Sunday, KUNOPPET chairman Lawrence Otunga said that they will not allow nursery teachers to be despised and humiliated through earning low salaries and should be treated fairly as other public servants.
Otunga vowed to fight for the revision of the salary recommendation until when a reasonable decision is met.
“We are not happy with SRC’s decision to humiliate us. Is seven thousand enough salary for a teacher? How will a teacher pay house rent and pay school fees for their children? A teacher also has their personal needs and families to take care of,” he said then.
“We deny the recommendations from SRC to governors and we say that nursery teachers will not be despised and we are here to fight for the rights of every ECDE teacher.”