$37M in union dues deducted by MoE paid over to GTU annually




Education Minister Priya Manickchand
The Education Ministry has informed the Guyana Teachers Union (GTU) that the Government would no longer deduct union dues which are remitted to the union.

This decision, the ministry has said, is in keeping with the ruling by Chief Justice Ian Chang in the case of Guyana Public Service Union vs Nanda Gopaul (number 584W/2000-Demerara).

“Further, the Ministry took into consideration the current unlawful industrial action which has become wholly politicised, the barrage of threats disseminated by GTU across the country, as well as the racist sentiments and ethnically divisive rhetoric which will never be tolerated by this Government as we continue to build our beautiful ‘One Guyana’,” the MoE has said.

This publication understands that about 4500 out of the 13,500 teachers who are represented by the union are currently on strike. Every month, $700 is deducted from each unionized teacher and remitted to the GTU. This adds up to about $3.1 million monthly, and approximately $37 million annually.

The MoE is reiterating that most of the Union’s requests were agreed on by both parties, thus resulting in several benefits for teachers across the country.

These include:
1. The removal of the Child Development Index Card (CDIC) as a required school document.
2. The removal of the General Scheme of Work as a curriculum document.
3. The weekly preparation of lesson plans, rather than daily.
4. All trained teachers being eligible to be a Senior Assistant Master/Mistress after 6 years, rather than 7.
5. A total of 50 duty-free vehicles to teachers per year PLUS the granting of a duty-free concession to all senior teachers who have 3 years left to serve and have not received a concession previously.
6. All teachers being provided termly with grants to purchase teaching materials.
7. All CPCE pre-service trainees being paid $90000 rather than a $10000 stipend per month, except a trainee teacher refuses same.
8. The Ministry of Education requested the Teaching Service Commission and the School Board Secretariat to do 2 senior promotion cycles per year, so that more teachers can be promoted and earn higher salaries.
9. A general waiver letter to allow teachers to travel abroad without collateral.
10. The issuance of one waiver letter to cover the teacher’s contracted period.
11. The holders of the Technical Teachers’ Certificates being appointed as Assistant Masters/Mistresses.
12. The creation of more senior vacancies in nursery, primary and secondary schools.
13. The reduction in teaching periods for secondary teachers.
14. The assignment of an assistant teacher to senior teachers in primary and nursery schools.
15. The appointment of floating teachers to schools to reduce the workload and substitute for teachers who are absent.
16. The implementation of the EMIS system which would eliminate most aspects of manual record-keeping.
17. An Open Day policy which is held centrally and regionally to address teachers’ concerns.
18. The appointment and upgrade of all teachers who attended UG without official release and permission before, during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.
19. A reduction in the number of teaching practice for CPCE teachers.
20. The institution of a digitalized senior promotion process.
21. A simplification in the Teacher Upgrade Process after improved qualifications.
22. The substitution of the bead teachers’ monthly report with a reduced digital version.
23. A waiver for the issuance of the permanent trained teachers’ certificate.
24. The placement of guidance and counselling officers in secondary schools to assist with the disruptive behaviours of students.
25. The continuous placement of data entry clerks in each school to assist with digital record-keeping.
26. The removal of the quota system to attend UG.
27. The introduction of a Teacher Support Unit within the Ministry of Education.

Meanwhile, the Education Ministry has again expressed its gratitude to all teachers who continue to report for duty towards ensuring that the nation’s children receive the education they rightfully deserve.

The Government of Guyana, the release added, will continue to work tirelessly towards improving the conditions of all teachers across this nation.