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Feb 2, 2017

B.N.T.U. and Ministry of Education Complete Court-Ordered Mediation

A court ordered mediation between the Belize National Teachers Union and the Ministry of Education has concluded.  Although the outcome of that process will not be made public, News Five understands that both parties are yet to return to the Supreme Court to provide Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin with an update.  The union and government have been at loggerheads since October 2016, when teachers effected an eleven-day strike.  While the countrywide walkout resulted in a number of demands being met, including the subsequent ushering in of a thirteenth senator, the ensuing issues of salary deductions and makeup time were never settled.  The matter was taken to court and the CJ ordered that there be an intervention to resolve the conflict within a period of forty-five days.  B.N.T.U. remained steadfast in its adherence to the Education Rules, despite government’s move to put together a timetable to make up for lost classroom sessions.  In fact, a schedule set out by the Ministry of Education and the respective managing authorities for classes to resume on January third was never fulfilled.  A majority of primary schools reopened on January ninth while the deadline for mediation was drawing closer.  A date for apprising the Chief Justice on the outcome of the mediation has not been set.

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