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Jun 14, 2013

Teachers’ Union meets to respond to Education Minister’s verbal assault

Patrick Faber

The international business community is not the only sector that is taking a hit from G.O.B. The Belize National Teachers Union (B.N.T.U.) is considering its next move after Minister of Education, Patrick Faber, came out swinging at them and teachers during a press conference held on Thursday. The verbal jabs touched all bases including: dismal P.S.E. results; the “ridiculously high” salary adjustments; and the unions defense of teachers accused of molesting students.  The fiery rhetoric came after the ministry held society accountable for the poor student performance in English and Math.


Patrick Faber, Minister of Education [File: June 13th, 2013]

“The role of the teachers union. You know it’s absolutely amazing—and I’ll go out on a limb that teachers are saying we want a salary adjustment of thirty percent when the government is saying we can’t afford it. And then we have the same old results. And there is no denying that teachers have a tremendous effect on what these results are. And correct me if I am wrong, I don’t hear the union’s talking about how we can improve professionalization in the teaching service at all. We have a union in this country—and I wah get into trouble again for it—that fights for teachers who are incompetent, some of them who are molesters, some of them who don’t do their jobs in the classroom and the union officials know it. But we fight for them. They are not functioning, they are not doing the best job, but the minute the principal or management or ministry who tries to bring them up, there is a champion called the union who fights against.”


B.N.T.U.’s President, Luke Palacio, told News Five today that the Council of Management will meet on Saturday to discuss, among other things, their response to the allegations by the Minister of Education and the revised National Gender Policy.

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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6 Responses for “Teachers’ Union meets to respond to Education Minister’s verbal assault”

  1. Carla says:

    Please ask the minister how comes for years his ministry are changing the Language Arts way of teaching over and over and cannot find a way that works for the country. This show that his ministry is incompetent. How can the results improve when he will go on live television and tell the students of the country you don’t have to worry if you fail because there will be a high school for you to attend. He took out corporal punishment which means he gives all authority to students saying that you can have your way when you are at school. Minister Faber needs to go into a classroom for a week and teach and feel what we are feeling. This has nothing to do with politics. I wonder if his children at home disrespect his this way that is why he doesn’t have respect for himself. And this is the man that wanted to be the next leader of our country. Laad have mercy.

  2. sickntired says:

    The minister in charge of policy making so instead of licking shots at the union why he no sit down with everybody and chart the best way forward for di country? This is what happens when you vote in ruffians who only know the fighterous way fi try handle tings. Nincompoop!

  3. NY says:

    To solve Belize’s education system, there has to be a partnership between the parents of each child and the schools they attend, because without it we will continue to see a decline in our kids education and the further decline in our country’s future. The parents have to make sure that their kids are well fed and prepared to learn everyday, which means that they have to instill in them proper home training i.e. being respectful and obedient. Furthermore parents must be held accountable for their kids homework being done daily and that their kids review and study all the extra assignments and materials given to them. Parents should not be disappointed to learn that their kids are not successful in school if they the parents are not doing their jobs by reinforcing what their kids are taught at school. Parents also have to be cognizant of the fact that kids learn the most during the first five years of life, so it is important they and their kids teachers, teach the kids as much during these early years so as set and build a strong learning foundation.
    GOB has a very important role to play in regards to hiring the best teachers for our kids, because without good and properly trained teachers, our kids are doom to fail, which creates a ripple effect in society that leads to a rise in all the social ills that are plaguing our country. There must be a strict screening process accompanied by a very attractive salary to get the best teachers in the classrooms. GOB can also implement policies that would allow low level inmates to give back to society by building furniture for the schools; planting crops and rearing animals to help feed our low income kids, because it is a known fact that kids cannot learn on an empty stomach.
    While I support B.N.T.U. in their efforts to represent teachers, I hold the organization responsible for weeding out bad teachers, this is the only way our kids can thrive in the classroom. There is no reason to represent unqualified and incompetent members if all they do is bring down the organization’s credibility and render good teachers to bad publicity. This union must assess its members on and annual basis to make sure that the teachers maintain and stay abreast of all the new techniques coming on stream to help give our kids the best learning experience.
    As a society we have to put a lot of emphasis on education. If one looks across the globe he/she will see that governments and cultures that makes early investment in educating its people have a very high return on their investments. These returns manifest themselves in lowering crime rates and alleviating poverty that leads to a better quality of life for all. Government gets a higher tax base that leads to funds that are readily available to make more investment for its people. This could lead to better infrastructures, cleaner environment and so forth…..

  4. Charl says:

    Fool thats what unions do,they fight for the working force so it is the responsibility of the minister of education to make sure the students get better education and do changes for the better of the students.

  5. Rod says:

    Why you teachers are so dumb I no understand can’t you see that this gov and your union are in collusion and you are being taken for fools I bet these union members got a big raise but not you you are being taken for a ride your union cares nothing about you just like your pm and gov. They are hoping you stay in a state of foolishness please wake up teachers get rid of this chain around your necks called union and gov.

  6. Caye says:

    Mr. Minister of education, you are insulting the faith of many teachers, why would such an honourable Minister insult the teachers of this country, when you know you have set up a mechanism, that look after the background of the teachers, that are to be teaching in the classrooms. Stop the blame game,so YOu are also saying the Teachers’ commmission is no use. lets be real.

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