Tension as Kayunga head teachers reject transfers

Thursday February 14 2019

Cherished

Cherished. Pupils of Namagabi Umea Primary School play in the compound on Tuesday. The school management has blocked the transfer of the sitting head teacher. PHOTO BY FRED MUZAALE 

By FRED MUZAALE

Kayunga District authorities are contemplating the next move after primary school head teachers rejected transfers to new work stations.
According to the district education officer, Ms Alice Dhoya, they transferred 167 head teachers just before the opening of this term.

However, a number of head teachers, with support from political leaders and heads of school foundation bodies, rejected the transfers.

Among them are Mr Mohammed Ssemambo, who had been transferred from Namagabi Umea Primary School to Kanjuki Umea Primary School, and Mr Abbey Ziraba, who had been moved from Kangulumira Muslim Primary School to Ssekaggya Islamic Primary School.

Daily Monitor has learnt that the transfers failed to take place following disagreements between senior staff in the education department and a section of district officials whose relatives are head teachers.

“Following these disagreements and defiance of some head teachers, the district authorities late last week cancelled the transfers and asked the affected head teachers to remain at their present stations of work,” a source in the district education department that preferred anonymity told this newspaper on Tuesday.

Disarmed authorities
This, the source said, shocked many people, including teachers, with some wondering whether the district authorities are still in control of civil servants.
This has since prompted the deputy Chief Administrative Officer, Mr Benson Otim, to begin investigations into the matter.

Besides head teachers, the district also transferred 24 deputy head teachers and 85 classroom teachers.
“It is true we had transferred the head teachers in a massive exercise but we have since halted the exercise so that we organise ourselves as a department first,” Ms Dhoya said on Tuesday. She added: “When we are done with organising ourselves, we shall carry out the transfers.”

Ms Dhoya said the transfers were aimed at enhancing education standards and improving service delivery. In last year’s Primary Leaving Examination results, Kayunga District scored 566 first grades, up from 301 in 2017.
Mr Ssemambo, the head teacher Namagabi Umea Primary School, admitted that members of the school management committee had pleaded with the DEO not to transfer him.

“The school management committee thought that no one is capable of replacing me at the moment. So, they told the district officials that I am left with one more year in the school as they look for my suitable replacement. I have no problem serving in any school,” he said.

According to the CAO, Mr Ashaba Ganafa, they would effect the transfer of head teachers in a phased manner, dismissing reports that the latter had refused to be moved.
One of the head teachers, who preferred not to be named, said many of them do not want to be transferred to schools that are not “juicy”.

“Most head teachers in schools located in trading centres or towns collect or charge some money from learners unlike those located deep in villages where parents do not know the value of education,” the head teacher said.

TOP PRIMARY SCHOOLS

Targeted. Some of the big schools in the district include Namagabi Umea, Ndeeba C/U, Busaana C/U, Kangulumira R/C, Kangulumira C/U, Kayonza C/U, Bbaale C/U, Kayunga Bishop Brown and Kayunga Girls.
Others are Kitimbwa C/U, Nazigo R/C, Nattetta C/U, Namulanda C/U and Kangulumira Umea.

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