Teacher welfare a serious weakness in education system: Wale
LEADER of Opposition Hon Matthew Wale says teacher welfare represents a critical weakness in our education system.
Speaking on the Education Bill 2023 debate in Parliament today, Hon Wale said there must be reasonable certainty about the teacher’s welfare being taken care of.
Hon Wale said it is clear that the government do not value our teachers.
“We value bureaucrats more than teachers because we pay them more,” he said.
The Opposition Leader said low pay for teachers has plagued our education system for decades yet government responses have been half-hearted, preferring to ignore the need.
He said this Bill would not solve this problem either.
“Teacher pay, housing, leave travel, professional development, among others, are issues that have a disproportionate bearing on teacher morale. Teacher absenteeism, though inexcusable, is a clear symptom of low teacher morale,” he said.
Hon Wale said this has a disproportionate adverse effect on the quality of education in our system.
He said the government has neglected teacher welfare to the great peril of our education system and students.
“What will it take for the government to finally be serious in its attitude to substantively addressing teacher welfare? The solution requires political will,” Hon Wale said.
He said for the teacher to be eager to teach, totally committed to the learning experience of his student, he must not be distracted by the needs of his own family’s welfare.
Hon Wale adds teacher welfare isn’t the only constraint faced by teachers.
He said the relative lack of teaching resources is also a serious constraint.
“Our efforts on this matter have long been inadequate. Of course, a creative resourceful teacher can inspire his students even without teacher resources, as some clearly do,” he said.
The Opposition Leader said this must not be the excuse for the ongoing neglect over so long.
– OPPOSITION PRESS