NFP salutes our Teachers
Sunday 4th October 2020
The National Federation Party salutes all our teachers for their hard work and sacrifice in the current climate of uncertainty as they celebrate World Teachers Day tomorrow.
It is a day to reflect on who they are, why they are in the profession and where they are heading. We value their integrity and their dignity and security of employment must be paramount at all times.
In 2020, all our teachers had to readjust their daily routine in terms of their professional output because of disruptions to the regular school calendar caused by COVID-19.
They have been under pressure to deliver the best under these trying circumstances and to ensure that those students in higher grade sitting for their external examinations are ready to do so.
We also understand the mess that the whole education system is in under the Fiji First government. We understand the frustration of teachers with respect to appointments, promotions, contracts and the total lack of transparency in determining their performance assessment payment.
It is still not too late for the current Government to hit the reset button and restore the dignity and respect as well as the social, professional and economic status of teachers. Firstly, Government must abolish contractual employment and put all teachers on permanent employment.
Secondly, Government should restore in service training and professional development. Government must establish partnership between unions, school management to ensure that teachers have a congenial and harmonious environment in which they can do their work.
In this long and important process, where parents and guardians in a way leave their children at the disposal of the teacher, it speaks volumes about the faith, trust and respect that the society has for our teachers.
That is why government must increase the retirement age to 60 years to ensure we retain the experienced cadre of teachers needed to guide the young, energetic professionals to forge a better future.
NFP extends its best wishes to all the teachers in Fiji on the occasion of the World Teachers Day. We salute and thank the teachers in the country for remaining steadfast in their commitment to teaching despite an uncertain climate.
Professor Biman Prasad