The Ministry of Education and Employment takes advantage of Educators and sets a bad example to employers.
The Union of Professional Educators (UPE) has expressed concern over the abusive conduct which the Department of Education has been adopting with Educators. The Ministry of Education and Employment is taking advantage of Educators when it fails to pay for overtime. It is shocking to see that there are Educators currently working one and a half hours overtime and getting paid for just one hour by the Department of Education.
Educators who have taken up transport duties are being exploited by being paid one hour less than they have worked, each day. Even though these Educators are working one and a half hours on transport supervision before school and another one and a half hours of transport supervision after school hours, which sums up to three hours of overtime a day, the Ministry of Education is just paying them for two hours of work and not the three hours effectively completed: in this way it is failing to pay for twenty hours of overtime on every monthly salary of each of the Educators involved in the task. The Department of Education is depriving these Educators’ families and children, of twenty hours of work at overtime rate. God forbid any other employers take up their example.
The right to information is denied to Educators.
The UPE cannot accept that Educators are not given important information about their work and the payment thereof. The Department of Education could not care less about the rights granted to workers by the Labour law where due information should be shared. For Educators to be kept in the dark as to the ratios of required Educators per student on resource centre transportation, the Department is refusing to publish the official document which delineates these ratios. Furthermore not only has it never provided Educators with this official document, but also when the union requested a copy, the directors of this same Department tried to mislead the union by responding that this was an internal document. This goes against the workers’ fundamental right to required information.
Injustice with regards to salaries of certain LSE2s
The lack of attention given to the recent sectorial agreement, has given rise to incredible injustice. This seems unbelievable but it is unfortunately very true. Common sense should create the realisation that those who had reached the grade of LSE2 before the MUT and the Department of Education signed the sectorial agreement have been getting paid less than what would be their due for two whole years. These LSE2s, who have worked at this level longer than those who rose to the grade of LSE2 after the signing of the agreement, are receiving lower remuneration. This injustice cost these LSEs a two-year long reduction in pay. Needless to say, this money, which is owed to the LSEs and their families, was retained by the Department of Education.
The UPE was the first to address this issue and following our endeavour, the Department assured us that this problem would be resolved before long. The Department of Education has, since then, gone back on this promised assurance, which almost looks like unwarranted retaliation on these LSEs, their children and their families.
It pains us to see such nonsensical behaviour, which is unheard of elsewhere, be a regular occurrence when it comes to our Educators.
The UPE will not be silenced on this kind of abuse and will be at the forefront to defend and protect Educators and their rights.
Directives issued to UPE Members
For several months the Union has been requesting information regarding a large number of LSE 2 members of UPE who have suffered an injustice due to recent changes in the PSMC where grades already in employment before their appointment to LSE 2 progressed to scale 12 step 3. This change didn’t take into consideration the LSE 2s appointed in 2016/17/18.
On another note, UPE is still waiting for the official document stating the teacher-student ratios for on board supervision both in mainstream & resource centres. This is in breach of the right to information.
For the above reasons, the Union is issuing the following directives;
- LSEs, KGEs & Teachers, Members of UPE are to not to attend or carry out any work on IEPs.
- LSE Members of UPE are not to work on adaptations.
- LSE Members of UPE are not to carry out and document observations in school.
The directives will be lifted once the above issues are resolved.
Members can seek further assistance by sending their queries at email@example.com or by calling our offices on 2590 5400