TSC releases guidelines on how to identify and handle teachers with Special Needs

The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) recognizes the rights of persons with special needs under Article 54 (1) of the Constitution with regard to its employees. The Commission has drafted a policy on teachers with disability. The purpose of this policy aims at removing all discriminatory practices against employees with special needs by creating an enabling environment that enhance their access to opportunities and services in the Commission.

This policy will help in addressing issues and concerns of employees with special needs namely; physical, visual and hearing impairment, albinism and psychological disorders by ensuring that employees with special needs:

  1. Are treated with dignity and respect, addressed and referred to in a manner that is not demeaning,
  2. Have the necessary facilities to enhance their movement in the work place.
  3. Have access to materials and devices to overcome constraints arising from their disability.
  4. Have the necessary information using the most appropriate means of communication that include but not limited to sign language and braille.

Determination of disability

The Commission in collaboration with the National Council for persons with Disability (NCPWD) shall determine the type, nature and degree of disability. Any employee with special needs shall be required to:

  1. Declare disability at the time of employment,
  2. Declare disability that occurs in the course of employment,
  3. Register and obtain a disability registration certificate from the NCPWD which shall be subjected to scrutiny before acceptance,
  4. Declare their disability status once registered by the NCPWD within a reasonable period acceptable to the Commission which shall be determined from time to time.

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Intervention strategies for employees with disability

The Commission shall adopt the following strategies to address the challenges of employees with special needs:

  1. Establish and maintain a database of all employees with special needs specifying the nature, type and severity of disability during the time of employment,
  2. Ensure compliance with the statutory provisions on Persons With Disability (PWD) during the time of recruitment,
  3. Deploy employees with special needs to positions and stations that enhance their performance,
  4. Pay prescribed allowances to employees with special needs where such is considered necessary for effective performance of duty,
  5. Guide employees with special needs to apply for PAYE tax exemption from the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) or any other benefits due from the government,
  6. Ensure that TSC premises and other facilities comply with the requirements of the PWDs Act 2003,
  7. Institute appropriate communication mechanisms to ensure that all employees with special needs get information,
  8. Never terminate or retire any employee on the basis of disability unless declared otherwise by a Medical Board,
  9. Support employees who acquire disability in the course of duty in accordance with the Work Injury Benefits Act (2007),
  10. Ensure inclusion of all employees in the Commission’s programmes irrespective of their physical status,
  11. Enhance collaboration and partnership with relevant government agencies and stakeholders on matters of benefit to employees with special needs.

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