Target:
Nairobi Waldorf School
Region:
Kenya

TO FELLOW PARENTS
NAIROBI WALDORF SCHOOL. 5th May 2017.

PETITION FOR SGM 8th May 2017 for DISMISSAL OF THE BOARD

We are calling for a Special General meeting (SGM) on 8th May 2017, the dismissal of the Board and election of an Interim Board to hold fort till 17th June when the AGM will be held. This petition is based on how the current Board has handled matters related to TSC Compliance of our teachers, and their failure to acknowledge and/ or take recommendations provided by parents. We are not advocating the school remaining non compliant. We advocate that the school retain the teachers AND become compliant.

The Board has acted in a manner calculated to put the school at risk, as:

1. On 10th February 2017, the Board, with reference to section 23 (2) of the TSC Act 2012, issued termination letters to 6 Primary School teachers because they had not yet completed TSC compliance procedures.

2. On 20th March 2017, the Board, with reference to a High Court Judgement from 2014, obtained waivers for TSC registration for non-compliant Kindergarten Teachers. This judgement was pursuant of section 23 (2) of the TSC Act, 2012. It was not a newly gazetted law that allowed an exception for Kindergarten teachers.

The Board has treated 2 groups of teachers to whom the same law applies, selectively, thus laying the School open to suit of law at the labour court.

The injustice of the decision to terminate these teachers, and the Board’s inflexibility about parents’ and teachers’ requests to let the teachers finish the term, are even more serious in terms of damage to the community. Requests were made in parents’ meetings on 25th and 26th April 2017.

3. On 21st March, 2017, the School Manager issued a letter to parents on behalf of the Board claiming that the above High Court Judgement was a new directive from the Ministry of Education. The Board was fully aware that the Court judgement was not a new law, but a 2014 jurisdiction argument between TSC and the Council of Governors. Thus we believe that the Board and Manager knowingly lied to parents in pursuit of a private agenda to dismiss teachers. Four teachers remain at risk of losing their jobs on May 10th, 2017.

4. The ECD waiver received on 21st March applies to the Class 2 teacher also but her notice has not been withdrawn.

5. On 4th May 2017 in a mediation meeting with parents of affected Primary Classes, the Board declined to take action to protect the school by obtaining TSC waivers for the Primary teachers or withdrawing their termination letters with immediate effect. TSC cannot issue a waiver without a request from the school. We believe this request has never been made, despite claims otherwise from the Board. When a simple oral request was made by the School Manager re Kindergarten teachers on 20th March, the waiver was immediately availed by the regulator, and the same would obtain for affected Primary teachers.

We are not advocating the school remaining non compliant. We advocate that the school retain the teachers AND become compliant.

6. Board members have been threatening and intimidating staff who talk to parents, in clear violation of the Board Charter. This creates an atmosphere of mistrust and unnecessary tension among staff whose primary duty is to nurture our children. Section 5.1 of the Board Charter states that Gathering and Sharing information are primary roles for all employees.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B7BbmyqWa5i1OWsxZVc5ZlRidDQ


With this petition, we are calling for a Special General Meeting on the evening of 8th May. We propose to dissolve the current Board and elect an interim Board to hold the school till 17th June when the usual AGM will be held. It is no use asking Board members to step down, as this would leave the school in the hands of the school Manager during the crucial period.

The Interim Board would be tasked with doing the minimum necessary to keep the school ticking over and the children and teachers in class without disruption, including withdrawing the notice letters of affected Teachers and obtaining TSC waivers for them. They will also need to choose what to do about new teachers, still on probation.

This matter is not covered in the school’s Trust Deed, as a situation where we could not trust the Board had never been envisaged. We, as a community, need to invent the relevant action and take it now, to protect the School. It is a far greater risk to us that our community be disrupted, than anything else. To keep all our regular teachers in class, on Thursday 11th May and onwards, under no further threat, sign below and turn up at Miotoni at 5pm on Monday evening.