President of the Barbados Secondary Teachers Union (BSTU), Mary Redman has brushed aside claims that those teachers seeking payment for correcting SBA papers are “money hungry.”
Furthermore, Redman has gone as far as to state that teachers are grossly underpaid for the services which they provide.
Speaking to media after attending a two-hour meeting with officials of the Barbados National Council of Parent Teachers Association Inc (BNCPTA), BSTU and a number of PTA officials at the headquarters of the union on 8th Avenue, Belleville, St Michael yesterday, Redman argued that teachers were well within their rights by demanding compensation for marking SBAs.
“I know of more than one science teacher who has done over 1 000 labs for this academic year alone. Schools are on the Easter vacation but there are teachers who have to attend classes to supervise SBAs.
“The General Secretary of the BSTU, Andrew Brathwaite, who teaches at Queen’s College, was at school this week supervising SBAs. In spite of our commitment to duty, uninformed persons were walking around saying that we are money-grabbers. This is far from the truth. Teachers have to undergo training for in excess of seven years in some cases, yet we are grossly underpaid as professionals,” Redman stated.
She dismissed arguments that marking SBAs was part of a secondary teachers’ terms of contract, noting that most of the officials holding senior positions in the Ministry of Education never taught at the secondary level and were therefore unaware of the volume of work involved in supervising SBAs and marking them.
Redman also dismissed claims that the SBA issue was sprung on officials of the Ministry of Education by producing correspondence dated May 8, 2014 which was addressed to that Ministry informing it of a resolution which was approved by the union’s annual general meeting of April 8, 2014 seeking compensation for the marking of SBAs.