Bungoma Boys’ High School Chief Principal Samwel Kaunda has been sent on a compassionate leave and 10 teachers transferred to other schools as the Ministry of Education launches investigations into the issues affecting the institution.
This has been confirmed by County’s Teachers Service Commission (TSC) Director Adan Ibrahim who said the transfers were normal in line with the commission’s policies and structures concerning the teaching personnel countrywide.
Addressing the Media in his office, Ibrahim said some teachers were transferred because a preliminary investigation had indicated that they colluded with students in planning of a strike at the school.
Ibrahim noted that some of the teachers have overstayed in the school.
“Some teachers had stayed in the school for over 20 years and in such a case even their performance slows down,” said Ibrahim.
Ibrahim said the decisions had been reached by stake holders as measures to ensure that the school that was once an academic giant in the region gets back to its feet.
“Every decision we have made is with the aim of reviving this school and nothing else,” he said.
He said the principal had been moved because of security concerns after he himself had reported fears for his life.
He added that students in the school have on several occasions protested the poor leadership from the principal while the transferred teachers have been accused of inciting the students into causing chaos at the school.
The TSC director said students had further complained of lack of water in the school.
They said bathing, washing their uniforms, cleaning their dormitories and classes was a headache.
“The hygiene standards in the school are poor. The pressure of water in the taps is too low,” a student said.
Initial reports indicated that the teachers were linked with inciting students to torch the school dormitory two weeks ago – the dormitory was housing 184 students.
The school was indefinitely closed a fort night ago and students sent home by education officials.
The learners had accused the principal of ruling them with an iron fist and using colonial tendencies including high handedness while addressing their grievances.
It has been established that 10 teachers among them the deputy principal have been transferred, the school has 54 employed TSC teachers.
Kaunda’s position has since been taken by Wycliffe Wambuchi from Lwandanyi Secondary School of Sirisia Constituency.
Wambuchi has been deployed as the deputy principal but will also double up as the school principal on acting capacity.
The Kenya Red Cross team headed by its Governor and Board of Directors’ Chairman Dr. Mohamud Sheikh Nurein visited the school and disbursed blankets, mosquitoes nets, soaps and other essential items.
The items will be given to students who were affected by the fire inferno that razed down the Shalom Dormitory.
Dr. Mohamud said Kenya Red Cross Society will continue in aiding out those who are involved in disasters especially schools.
He used the opportunity to urge students to use amicable ways of open discussions in solving issues that affect their learning and stay at school instead of burning school property like dormitories as they are burdening their parents with extra costs in the construction of new facilities.
Dr. Mohamud said that the Kenya Red Cross society is in talks with the ministry of education to include disaster management skills into the learning syllabus.
By Achola Mathews