State of Emergency in St Catherine North

ST CATHERINE, Jamaica — Prime Minister Andrew Holness a short while ago announced that a State of Public Emergency has been declared for St Catherine North.This, he said, will last initially for 14 days. Read more

70 per cent of high school teachers in Region Four remain on job

Observer staff reporter

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

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MONTEGO BAY, St James — Despite the widespread support in several parishes for the sick-out taken by public school teachers who are trying to press the Government for an improved wage offer, classes were conducted at a number of high schools in western Jamaica yesterday.

According to Dr Michelle Pinnock, director of the Ministry of Education's Region Four, classes were held at about 70 per cent of the high schools in the region, which includes the parishes of St James, Hanover, and Westmoreland.

“I would say about 30 per cent of our high schools are affected; about 17 of our 25 schools were up and running,” Dr Pinnock told the Jamaica Observer.

She noted that some high schools were able to conduct classes with the assistance of prefects, the few teachers who showed up, education officers, representatives from the regional Parents Teachers' Association, and principals.

Students who had examinations, she said, were able have them done.

In the meantime, Dr Pinnock said that, while a large number of the 136 primary school teachers across the parishes of St James, Hanover and Westmoreland did not turn up for school; classes, especially in the grade six, were held, as students prepare for the Grade Six Achievement Test.

It was the same for affected primary schools in northern Trelawny where a handful of teachers were on hand to work with grade six students only. At Granville Primary School, only five of the 17 teachers showed up for school. Of the five, however, two returned home, leaving the other three to carry on.

Parents of children attending Falmouth Primary were asked to pick up students early as only four of the 17 teachers reported for duties. The school said the decision was made by the board.

Some parents in Trelawny expressed their disgust at the teachers' protest action, while others were in solidarity.

“The teachers should look out for the children's welfare and do their jobs,” one parent was overheard saying.

”The teachers also have their family's welfare to look after,” another parent retorted.




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