The transfer of primary school head teachers announced by Kalungu District, just days to the beginning of the school term, has attracted mixed reactions from a section of stakeholders in the district.
A total of 13 primary head teachers have been transferred and are expected to report to their new duty stations before the new school term opens on February 3.
The stakeholders criticised the timing of the transfers, saying the move may affect normal operations of various schools.
Mr Charles Sserwanja, the chairperson of social services committee at Kalungu District, at the weekend said failure to involve other stakeholders may affect the good intention for the transfers.
“There are many head teachers who have over stayed in schools, but were not transferred yet some who were transferred have served for just a few years,” he said.
He claimed the transfers were driven by corruption allegations as some head teachers paid inducements to stay in their schools. “As the chairperson, I have already set up a subcommittee to investigate those transfers,’’ Mr Sserwanja added.
In the transfers made last week, the head teacher of Nalunnya Primary School in Kyamuliibwa Sub-county, Ms Rachael Naluyinda, was taken to Kabungo Primary School, Mr Bbaale Mayanja, the former deputy head teacher of Kalangala Primary School, was promoted and posted to Kabukunge Muslim Primary School as head teacher, replacing Muhammad Sserubiri, who has been posted to Kitosi Primary School.
Ms Prossy Nabawanuka, the former head teacher of Kyambala Roman Catholic Primary School, has been transferred to Bulingo Building Tomorrow Primary School, Ms Teddy Nassali, the former head teacher of Kisitula Primary School in Lwabenge Sub-county was posted to Kapere Memorial Primary School in Lukaya Town Council replacing Boniface Kimbugwe, who has been transferred to Bakijjulula Primary School to replace Mr Charles Ndawula, who was posted to Kyabakuuma Primary School.
Attempts to transfer Mr Moses Kirigwajjo, the head teacher of Kalungu Mixed Primary School, failed after parents put up a spirited fight, accusing the district education officer, Mr David Bbaale, of having ‘bad intentions’.
The school is among those that did not register any first grade in the just released 2019 Primary Leaving Examinations.
Mr Yasin Ssempijja, a councillor representing Kyamulibwa Sub-county, said it was evident that the transfers would affect the smooth beginning of term one.
“You cannot announce a mass transfer of head teachers just one week to the beginning of the new term yet you had more time during the long holiday to prepare and inform them. This is a great mistake because the school heads are human beings who need time to organise themselves before shifting to their families,” he said.
Ms Janat Nabadduka, a parent and member of a school management committee in one of the schools in Lwabenge Sub-county, said the district education officials in Kalungu are insensitive.
“It is true the transfers are supposed to bring about effective service delivery, but the manner in which they are conducted does not add any value. In 2019, we got some new two teachers at school hoping that they would boost the academic progress of our children, but nothing has changed,” she said.
Last year, Kalungu District registered 5,138 pupils to sit for PLE and only 701 scored First Grade (14 per cent), 2,567 scored Second Grades, 850 scored Third Grade, 579 passed in Fourth Grade, 330 failed while 111 did not sit for the examinations.
Some of the affected teachers claim the transfers should have been communicated in early January before many of them made the New Year plans.
“Unfortunately, we were not given a chance to present our problems yet we have families and dependents who need our attention. I have a sick brother with a chronic ailment, but my case has always been dismissed,” One of the affected head teachers, who preferred anonymity, said.
The Kalungu District education officer, Mr David Bbaale, said the appointing authority is not mandated to consult any teachers before transferring them.
“It is unfortunate that this teacher transfer exercise has been politicised. Those teachers clearly know that the transfers are within the guidelines of the Public Service standing orders. Any teacher must be ready for a transfer at any place, any time without giving any excuse,” he said.
He emphasised that while making the transfers, they considered several issues, including school heads who had been at their respective stations for more than five years. “Those who have issues, let them bring them forward, rather than complaining to the media,” he added.
Mr Caleb Tukaikiriza, the Resident District Commissioner, warned the transferred head teachers against remaining at their old work stations.
Kalungu District has a total of 102 public schools of which 91 are primary schools.
Other transferred head teachers include Ms Olivia Nakimwero from Bugonzi C/U P/S to Kyamuliibwa Baptist P/S replacing Ms Mary Sserunjogi, who moves to Nalunnya P/S. Mr Fred Mugira from Kabungo C/U P/S, who was posted to Bugonzi C/U P/S. Mr Ramax Muhangi from Kyato Muslim P/S moves to Kisaana Muslim P/S. Ms Mariam Nambirige from Namuliro P/S moves to Kyato P/S, while Mr Saad Ssekalo joins Namuliro P/S from Kisaana P/S.