Bring it on!
Those were the strong words of President of the Barbados Secondary Teachers’ Union (BSTU) Mary Redman, as she made it clear today teachers would not be bullied into correcting School-Based Assessments (SBAs).
Speaking at the union’s annual general meeting this morning in the auditorium at Queen’s College, Redman said the teachers who are demanding compensation from CXC for correcting SBAs are even more resolute and support for them is growing.
“It is now or never. We need to act . . . decisively. The Foreign Language teachers at two schools are actively considering not doing the language orals even though they are paid to do so, simply to act in solidarity with their colleagues. Now that is solidarity, that is unity,” she said.
Redman later told Barbados TODAY that English and Maths teachers who would normally only have to submit documentation have decided that they would not do that either, in support of their colleagues.
At the same time, she knocked principals and the Barbados National Council of Parent Teacher Associations (BNCPTA) for not standing with the teachers, noting that the latter group had backtracked on its support for teachers after PTAs were summoned to a meeting with the Ministry.
Viewing the invitation with suspicion, since her union was unable to get a hearing from the Ministry of Education on the contentious issue she said was raisedsince 2006, the union boss asked: “Were they told that the BSTU is to be ignored because all of the present action is because we are still smarting from the Alexandra issue? That the Ministry won that matter and we are still vexed? That this time around they will deal with us and that heads will roll? Have these threats come from former trade union leaders? Has the modified position of the BNCPTA resulted from the meeting?”
Meanwhile, BNCPTA president Shone Gibbs told Barbados TODAY that his organization had followed through on its commitment, given over the weekend at a meeting with the BSTU, to deliver correspondence to the Registrar of CXC and the Ministry of Education today, inviting both sides to meet with the union on the SBA matter.