Ninety-nine newly appointed senior teachers were told to expect challenges as the new school term opened because today’s teacher was not the same as those of yesteryear.
In fact, Chief Education Officer Laurie King warned that they might find themselves challenged with staff who were either similarly or more qualified and have to deal with such matters.
“We have some challenges before us that we have to confront and I always say where there is a problem, there is an opportunity and we expect that the same high standards that was set by your predecessors, and I must pay respect to them, … but the challenge now is for us to move forward.
“You will find that in management today the persons that you will be called upon to manage are not as recessive as they used to be in the past. They are not as docile and they are in many respects just as qualified as you are or in some instances even more qualified and so they will challenge you and they will challenge the system,” he said.
He told the 80 teachers at the ceremony at the Queen’s Park Steel Shed this morning that as far as leadership was concerned, they had to remain on the cutting edge.
King added that he expected them to take use of the opportunities provided by the ministry to further their experience and knowledge-base, because they would be expected to be a team player, to be willing to listen and work along with colleagues in making decisions.
“I would expect and the ministry would expect that you would approach your work with a certain seriousness, that you would be decisive in your decision-making, that you will not necessarily be a difficult person to approach, that you will have the kind of interpersonal skills which are necessary to allow for you to communicate with the members of staff and to work along with others; that you will at all and in all occasions be loyal to the ministry, to the position that you hold, to the school and that you will work with the principals of your schools in terms of the execution of the mandate of the Ministry of Education,” he stated.
The chief advised them as they took up their new posts to take care of their health, while they kept education in Barbados at the forefront of systems others wanted to emulate. (LB)