UPE is seriously concerned about the issue regarding onboard supervision. When the government had proposed the mentioned scheme one was hopeful that the system would consider both the wellbeing of the students as well as that of the educators onboard.
To the union’s disappointment, both aspects have been neglected by the competent authorities as various failures seem to have emerged. Educators are being expected to change their lifestyle to accommodate the department. Members have reported to the union that they are expected to drive with their own car to a particular locality to start off their onboard duties, leave their car parked in one locality while eventually working in a different location. Due to this procedure, union members are left stranded at school in the eventuality that some emergency crops us during the day.
We have also been informed by our members are being treated like babysitters when they do their drop off later during the day as they would have to wait for irresponsible parents who come late. In this way, the working day of the onboard supervisor has no end but is left at the mercy of the parent.
Another failure is to attract the required number of educators to involve themselves within this program. One is not surprised that educators failed to apply due to the above precarious conditions. Now the department is finding itself in a position to recruit non-educators. We hope that such supervisors will be in full conformity with the established requirements as to safeguard our students. We also request as a union that such supervisors be in the possession of a first aid course as well be aware of the health and safety regulations onboard public transport duties.
The Union of Professional Educators – Voice of The Workers would like to point out these factors and expects that a solution is found within the coming months. The union is also disappointed with the fact that such an issue should have been clarified during the sectoral agreement between the state and MUT. Once again both parties forgot educators in general and now both are scrambling to find a last-minute solution. Typically a case of management by crisis.