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Feb 18, 2011

PTA President says teachers are to blame for Sadie Vernon woes

The Sadie Vernon High School drama is far from over. According to the teachers, next week they will hold a formal press conference in which they will detail many instances of questionable decisions made by the administration. And in the interest of education, they will also discuss how to re-establish the integrity of the school and ways to improve the success rate. And though the principal declined comment, the president of the Parent Teacher Association who said he taught for thirty eight years, had no intention of being silent.   In his blistering opinion, the teachers are to blame and several more of them need to leave Sadie Vernon.

Darrell Humes, President, Parent Teacher Association, Sadie Vernon

“I don’t want to see anybody lose their jobs, teaching is not an easy profession. But if you’re not committed to it, then don’t do it. And this is my gripe that I have with these people. They are not doing what they are supposed to do. I am in support of the board dismissing them because clearly they were not following rules and regulations in many, many ways. It’s not just one incident, it was a number of things that happened that led to their dismissal. For the staff to get up, other members of the staff to get up, and protest against those dismissals is very hypocritical. Since I took over as President of the P.T.A., we have been trying to work with the staff. We sat down and we spoke with them and the executive body and they promised that they were going to work; things were going to look better. The feud that’s been going on too long at this school and I didn’t want to take sides at the beginning but clearly at some point or the other I had to and I can see that it’s not the administration’s fault that the problem is coming form. Clearly there are people here who just want to do what they want to do and don’t want to be accounted for it.  I’m going to give you an example right here. We did a survey, this is what the PTA did last year—we actually sat down right here at this very table for one week and we did surveys. The first day, the Monday, there were eight teachers absent, Tuesday there were six, Wednesday there were six, Thursday there was eight, Friday there was six—that’s one week. You know the amount of credit hours students are missing out and that’s only for a week. When we looked at it in the first semester, first term, when the school opened in august, there were six absences just for that three days. School opened on a Wednesday and there were six people absent. In September there were forty-three, October seventeen and that was because of the hurricane thing and there were few days of school. In November it was forty-four and when we closed off this study in December, there were twenty one. That was a hundred and thirty-one total absences. You know how much credit hours that add up to for students. That’s a huge amount for any school much less a school like this school where children are challenged.

Darrell Humes

And this is our thing; they are not doing what they are suppose to do and I would like to see several more of them go from here. I am not making any bones about it. There are many more of them that I want to see out that are not carrying their weight.  They haven’t even told you, there are three sets of fourth form students that are not going to sit C.X.C. this year and the parents have paid for them to sit C.X.C. Why? They were preparing the students. One, was preparing from the wrong syllabus; another one, they had certain amount of work to be prepared and the amount of work isn’t finished. And these people paid for children to take exam and they are not going to sit the exam. We have a right to be annoyed at them for kicking up over something like this. We have a right, we have a right. And I would like to see many more of them leave this school, many more. Until they leave, this school will not have the sort of order that it should have.”

News Five contacted members of the board who say that they will convene an emergency meeting on Saturday morning. We’ll have more details on the Sadie Vernon High School fallout as it continues to develop next week.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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5 Responses for “PTA President says teachers are to blame for Sadie Vernon woes”

  1. BZNinCALI says:

    Mr, Humes, thanks for explaining the other side, it is great to see parents get involved. I know that many teachers at this level do not like the intrusion but if parents do not hold the bad ones feet to the fire, their colleagues will not.

  2. Elias Avella says:

    Many of these teachers spent many years trying to get their education. For their careers to be put on hold is a situation that a poor developing nation can ill afford. It sends the wrong message to those younger ones coming up, that you can spend decades in school, but in a millisecond you can loose your bread and butter.

    Two of these teachers could well hold the potential to turn Belize around from the abyss. We need to understand that the disciplinary problems at the school is symptomatic of a wider problem as evidenced by Dr. Gayle’s Anthropological work. Sadie Vernon is at the epicenter of a National Tragedy.

  3. Robert says:

    Bravo for Mr. Humes, democracy needs people willing to speak “truth to power.”

  4. Justice says:

    Like I always belive there are always more than one side to a story. The teachers are setting wrong examples and must be diciplined. Whenever someone tries to make things better , once it upset their easy going ways, the other party will try to appear like the victim. The chuldren and parents are the ones who are sufferring her while teachers get so many days off.

    It is so typical of many government employees. If they were working in the private sector, Iwonder if they would try to strike.

    Belize needs shaping up and here is another set of adults who are not role models and who are supposed to be teaching our children. Although the principal is being painted as bad, I am proud of her for sticking to her beliefs and trying to have some order in the school.,

  5. cayobway says:

    Mr humes needs to take into consideration that if he get rid of all the taeachers that he feels should go, then the question arise > Who will teach the students? especially considering the hell hole that the high school is in not ,much teachers will want to come to belize city, especially with the amount of violence occuring there. even though there are differences he cannot insist that floks quit their jobs . what about the students?

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