Let good teachers teach... and compensate them well!

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

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Dear Editor,

With the introduction of the National College for Educational Leadership (NCEL), the crème de la crème of every known institution is selected to complete the one-year Aspiring Principals' Programme to further enhance the administrative work in our schools.

NCEL, its students and facilitators must be commended for the excellent delivery and work put in to advance the educational cause in this and similar programmes.

Strikingly, I find that every excellent classroom teacher is vying for a place in the college and, by extension, every excellent classroom teacher is yearning to be an administrator. But why? Are we saying that the excellent classroom teacher cannot remain in the classroom and command the changes necessary as a transformational leader? Are we saying if the classroom teacher does not aspire to be administrator he/she lacks ambition or the transformational fervour? I think not!

As the work of NCEL continues, I am suggesting that the college identifies classroom teachers who are passionate about their work and offers to them similar educational programmes that will make them even greater at what they do. This, however, must attract incentives/increments similar to the proposed pay by performance suggested some time ago.

I must commend excellent classroom teachers, in particular, one of my vivacious colleagues, Charrone Grant (Lady Phoenix) of Farm Primary and Junior High School. She has brought such energy to her classroom, her teaching, her students, and her colleagues that this fervour automatically captivates one's attention and evokes new passion for the profession. Charrone must never be allowed to leave the classroom, or education in that sense as this would be a devasting loss. She, like other such passionate educators, must be identified, encouraged to stay, receive further training that will enhance their craft, and given all the emoluments similar to that of the school administrator.

In the words of Anne Sullivan: “People seldom see the halting and painful steps by which the most insignificant success is achieved.” But I see the painful yet significant steps of classroom teachers around me every day.


Everton Tyndale


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