Teachers want schools opened in August

Teachers want schools opened in August

MASERU-TEACHERS’ associations and the Ministry of Education are on a collision course over when schools will re-open after the lockdown.
The teachers’ unions want schools to be reopened in August while the ministry is pushing for further talks on the matter.

Following a meeting on Tuesday, the teachers’ associations immediately announced that schools will reopen in August, much to the annoyance of the Ministry of Education.
Firebrand Secretary General for the Lesotho Association of Teachers (LAT), Letsatsi Ntsibolane, said they had reached a decision to reopen schools in August.

He said students were already benefiting from lessons conducted through television and Radio Lesotho.
Students will therefore not lag behind in their lessons, he said.
He however admitted that some places could not benefit from the radio and television lessons because of network challenges.

“As teachers we have realised that going to school is still dangerous even beyond the May 5, 2020 lockdown deadline,” Ntsibolane said.
“Our suggestion has been that schools should reopen in August while students are taught over the radio and television,” he said.

He said so far the educational programme done through the Lesotho National Broadcasting Service (LNBS) had provided an excellent service to the students although it still needed to be beefed up particularly in the mountainous regions.

He also said the selected radio and television teachers should prepare well for the lessons.
He said the use of internet to educate students is not easy in Lesotho as some parts are unreachable.
Basic Education Principal Secretary, Dr Thabiso Lebese, said it was “shocking that these associations have started making announcements in the media about things we did not agree on”.

“It is absolutely not true that we have reached agreement that schools will reopen in August,” Dr Lebese said.
“What is the true is that there was such a suggestion but it was never agreed upon,” he said.

“Now I have a colossal duty of following them wherever they went to tell the people that they were told untruths,” he said, adding that “even whatever was discussed in the stakeholders’ meeting was not supposed to be discussed outside”.
“I am baffled by this behaviour.”

Nkheli Liphoto

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