The Ministry of Education was forced to activate its contingency plan in Linden after several teachers refused to turn up for work.
The Ministry took several trainee teachers from the Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE) along with some retired teachers and dispatched them to various primary schools to fill the void left by teachers who were protesting in front of the region’s Department of Education.
Some schools, including the Linden Foundation Secondary School, the Wisburg Secondary School, Regma Primary School and the New Silver City Secondary School, saw teachers showing up for work to attend to the students who turned up for school. However, at other schools, students were forced to return home after being met by locked doors.
The trainee teachers met with the Regional Education Officer (ag) (REDO), Keane Adams and Chairman of the Regional Education Committee, Denise Belgrave and were briefed on the role they will be playing for the duration of the strike action organized by the Guyana Teachers Union (GTU).
Meanwhile, Chief Education Officer (CEO) Marcel Hutson, visited several institutions in the mining town. The CEO met with the teachers and expressed his appreciation for their support during this period.
During his first visit to the Linden Foundation Secondary School (LFSS), the CEO met with approximately 20 teachers who were present and thanked them for reporting to duty on the first day of school. He reassured them that the Ministry of Education, and by extension, the Government of Guyana, is committed to making the lives of teachers better.
At the site of the protest action, Member of Parliament, Jermaine Figueira told the protesting teachers that being a teacher for 18 years; he empathizes with them and understands the struggle. Figueira reassured the teachers that the government is working to improve their offer.
“I believe that the government will make every effort to give the teachers an increase that they will be comfortable with as soon as possible. President Granger, who is committed to education, has come out himself to say that he will take the lead in teachers getting the increase that they can be comfortable with.”
President David Granger, at last Friday’s press conference, said that the Coalition Government, through the Ministry of Finance, is undertaking efforts to augment its initial offer. The Head of State disclosed that the Ministry of Social Protection is presently in discussions with the Ministry of Finance to determine the way forward. (Modified from Department of Information)