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‘Wrong day’ for teachers

Carol-Ann Tudor

‘Wrong day’ for teachers

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Teachers Professional Day should be held during the one-week vacation break and not on a “valuable school day”, says principal of Alexandra School, Jeff Broomes.
Speaking from his office yesterday, Broomes told the SATURDAY SUN that the “current practice should be stopped”.
He said while he was supportive of “professional development”, the “current practice” was no longer benefiting to the schools.
Broomes said although he did not agree with the one-week break either, it would be better to have the special day during that week, instead of utilising the last day of school   for such meetings.
“There are too many breaks altogether. If the ministry has given them the option, then I respect that option, but my views are well known.
“Teachers Professional Day as it is currently being practised should be stopped! It is not benefiting the schools anymore and it needs  to be reviewed,” he said.
Broomes said while  he had been one of the biggest supporters  when it started out for “professional development”, the concept had “somewhat changed”.
While half of Broomes’ staff complement were at the school engaging in activities catering to health and fitness, the other half joined the Barbados Secondary Teachers’ Union (BSTU) for its day of activities at Solidarity House.
President of the BSTU, Mary Redman, addressing those gathered, said it was a day to “address issues of professional concern to teachers at the macro level” and “not a day for honing technical skills”.
“That was never the vision or intention for  such a day . . .. Planning week, departmental meetings and the ministry’s various workshops exist to deal with that,” she said.
Redman told the teachers from various schools that they owed it to the union to come  to the activity every  year and to bring  their colleagues along   with them.
“We must not be intimidated by some administrators in our schools who still try actively to stop our members from attending this activity and to deny them their rights,” she said to loud applause.