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Jan 9, 2014

Minister of Education meets with the media on planned rallies by B.N.T.U.

Patrick Faber

By this afternoon, the Minister of Education Patrick Faber, in a meeting with the media, said that there is absolutely no reason why teachers should be demonstrating on a school day since they have made it abundantly clear that they are not holding a union meeting.  According to Faber, students have lost too much time from the classroom for a number of reasons, including the incessant rains.  For teachers to call off classes to participate in a rally, he says, is rather disappointing.


Patrick Faber, Minister of Education

“My position is that it is rather unfortunate, as our release states, we really believe that because, of course, of a number of issues that, especially because of the rains, we have lost a lot of valuable time in the classroom and I’m sure that the teachers will agree to this.  And so for something like this to be the reason why they would call off school to me is really disappointing and unfortunate.  I don’t see any reason and I, this is a personal view that I have held for so long, why these meetings or these rallies, in this case they’ve made the clear distinction that this is not a meeting it is a rally, why can’t it be done on a Friday or a non-school day if it is they want to make a point and demonstrate, if they really are wanting to show that concern for the students and for the education system.  So I appeal to them and of course, like you said, they’ve indicated that it will go on and so I don’t know that my appeal will necessarily change their minds.  But I have to make that appeal, not only on the part of the Ministry of Education, Youth & Sports, but also on behalf of the parents and of the management and the wider education stakeholders for them to be reasonable, for them to understand that this is not a time that we can afford to be missing classes. Notice this is not one event; it is from what I have been able to learn, a series of events that are planned. So this is a continuous disruption of classes in a time that when we’ve already lost for a number of reasons, but especially because of the rain, valuable instruction time in the classrooms.”



“Will those teachers who participate receive full pay?”


Patrick Faber

“Who participate? Well I don’t want to get into saying out there that there is a penalty. They have indicated in fact that it is an industrial action and of course there is a way to deal with that. But I am not going to go on record to issue any threat. At this point in time, I will say that I and my ministry want to be as amicable as possible. We believe that the union and its membership has a right to make its point and to even demonstrate and rally and there is a responsible way of doing that. And that is where we take issue with what they’re doing.”

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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1 Response for “Minister of Education meets with the media on planned rallies by B.N.T.U.”

  1. venus says:

    Oh! When the shoe is on the other foot. In 1995 he was on the front line when the teachers were not satisfied with their conditions.

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