The Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) said it is consulting parents through the School Development Association/ Committees to get their views on the Government’s plans to reopen schools for examination classes this month.
The Government announced on Tuesday that Cambridge examination classes will commence on 14 September while ZIMSEC examination classes will resume on 28 September, with exams starting on 1 December.
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In a statement, ARTUZ said the decision by the Government was inconsiderate amid the coronavirus crisis.
ARTUZ also said it will be conducting an online poll for teachers to ascertain their preparedness to report for duty this month. The statement read:
The government’s position to open schools on the 14th of September for Cambridge examination classes and 28th of September for Zimsec classes before teachers grievances are fully addressed is inconsiderate.
As Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe, ARTUZ we are engaging stakeholders such as parents through the School Development Association/ Committees to give us their view on this inconsiderate decision taken by the government.
We are also engaging the health sector at provincial and district levels to assess the state and preparedness of hospitals in case of the outburst of COVID-19 in schools.
The recommendations by the health sector will determine whether we can encourage our members to report for work.
Basically, the safety of learners and teachers from COVID-19 must be fully guaranteed in schools. The government must first test all learners and teachers, provide PPEs, fumigate all learning facilities that were used as quarantine centres.
The cost of living is beyond the reach of every teacher. All basic needs are priced in USD at a time when teachers are remunerated in useless RTGS$.
To get a detailed view of nearly every teacher concerning the preparedness to report for work, we are running an online poll. An evaluation report on the recommendations will determine our next step.
The teachers, learners and parents should agree on the next steps. Government officials are not part of the school ecosystem, their declarations are not binding.
We will make a decision based on safety, remuneration and right to education.
Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe