Jones:Make up classes a must
Efforts are under way to make up for the loss of teaching time at The Alexandra School.
As a result of industrial action through their representative the Barbados Secondary Teachers’ Union (BSTU), 30 plus teachers have been off the job for 12 days now and classes have been affected.
Minister of Education Ronald Jones said yesterday that the ministry was looking at Saturday classes for the St Peter school’s fourth and fifth form students, who are currently preparing for CXC exams.
“We will, in a formal way, through the Chief Education Officer, invite qualified, trained, strong content individuals to respond to our request for teaching to take place on Saturdays – in other words, boosting classes for those students,” he explained.
Jones said the difficulty was acting on a Monday to Friday basis and ministry officials were constantly looking for “methods of reaching students that would most likely be affected by this current saga”.
“At the heart of whatever we do is that our students must be engaged in some level of education. And that means that we would have to arrive at a solution to this,” he stressed.
When asked if students should continue to turn up for school under the current situation, Jones said there were still 20 plus teachers at the school and that “by and large” students were still being taught.
Jones was speaking at a Press conference held after a meeting with his other ministerial colleagues Dr Esther Byer-Suckoo, Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite and Parliamentary Secretary Harry Husbands with the principal of the school Jeff Broomes and his representatives the National Union of Public Workers, the Barbados Association of Principals of Public Secondary Schools and their attorneys.
The Barbados Secondary Teachers’ Union (BSTU) had indicated its unwillingness to meet with Broomes and his representatives so as not to compromise its stance in asking for Broomes’ separation.
A BSTU representative arrived after the meeting was under way and was asked to leave minutes later.
The minister has again sent a public invitation for the BSTU to return to the negotiating table. (YB)