EDITOR, The Tribune.
It seems that the battle between teachers and the ministry is a never ending one. School administrators seem to automatically take the side of the ministry while teachers have no choice but to run to the union to seek justice.
Why is it that there is no set person or department at the Ministry of Education charged with hearing and ruling on the grievances of teachers? Many teachers suffer great injustices from school administrators and have no one to listen objectively to their case at the Ministry level. In fact it seems that Ministry officials seem to think that administrators are always right and can do no wrong. However, if they were to listen and look closely they would find that teachers can shed light on many situations and that in many cases they are being unjustly treated.
When it comes to making decisions about educational issues the Ministry of Education officials do not seem to value the input of teachers and they are the ones who know most about the business and details of education.
Last week a seminar was held virtually exposing teachers to all sorts of new software that they are expected to use to teach children virtually by October 5th.
Many teachers have told me that there is no way that they can competently use these programmes in such a short time. They prefer to use zoom powerpoint edmodo and other programmes that they used last term because they are comfortable and familiar with these methods of online teaching. They can use these competently until they go back to face-to-face learning.
Is any one listening though? Did any one ask teachers how they feel about the new ideas put forth or how they feel about the sufficiency of measures being taken at their schools for COVID?
Probably not and that is sad and very wrong. If teachers feel like they are not being heard then they will scream and use the union to amplify their voices.
What is the answer? Value what teachers have to say, value how they feel and take actions to show that that is the case.
Give them a department or person to go to directly when they feel they are being unjustly treated by administrators or any one in education.
Be fair to them, hear their voices and make changes accordingly.
Why is this such a hard thing to implement?
A wise man takes counsel.
A WISE VOICE
September 14, 2020.