The dispute between the Belize National Teachers Union and the Ministry of Education, over the makeup time for the eleven days strike taken by BNTU, continues to unfold. As viewers may be aware, the Ministry of Education along with school managements agreed to add 6 days to the school calendar to catch up with the curriculum, which would require teachers to go back to the classroom on January 3rd and not on the 9th as it had previously been stipulated in the education rules. Today with only a few days left before classes are expected to resume, the BNTU issued a press release reiterating their position, which is to have their teachers back in school until January 9th.
In their release the BNTU points out that the rule used by the Ministry to try and force teachers to surrender six days of their Christmas vacation is not a valid one, and quotes Rule 131(4) of the hand book of policies which states that an amendment made to the school calendar where a school falls short of one hundred and eighty days, “special arrangements shall be made by the school Not the Ministry of Education to fulfill this requirement’
In their release the BNTU also demands the Ministry and the different school managements to include them in future discussions regarding the matter.
In ending, the BNTU also reiterates their willingness to work with their managements to make up any time lost and urges its members to stand with them and take their full three weeks of holiday which has been afforded to them through the Education rules.