Rundu-Some 100 teachers who are eligible to graduate this year picketed in front of the regional office of education in Rundu demanding an audience with the director of education Fanuel Kapapero to hand him their petition. They demanded that the education ministry reconsider the decision of the In-Service Training (INSET) programme that has enrolled close to 1,000 practising junior primary teachers, with the same number again to be enrolled each year over the next three years.
“The INSET programme should be placed on halt as the country is producing more qualified teachers each year and those that are already in the programme should go for full-time studies,” said the petition which was read by Kazungo Nikodemus on behalf of the group.
Kapapero however refused to step out of the office to receive the petition, saying he was not informed prior to the gathering. “There are procedures and these people did not follow them,” Kapapero told New Era.
The group, which represented over 500 other unemployed teachers countrywide, wants the education directorate to fire unqualified teachers in order for them (the protesters) to be recruited into the system.
In their petition they also noted that the ministry should see to it that recruitment of teachers be done by the regional office, not through headmasters, saying this has brought too many unqualified teachers into the education system through corruption, as some headmasters hire who they know or favour, and for various personal reasons, which in the end compromises the quality of education.
“Directors must not sign recommendation forms for unqualified teachers that principals bring to them – it will disadvantage qualified teachers. Directors in all 14 regions must also not give excuses to recruit temporary teachers because a certain teacher has for example rejected a post in the extremely rural areas – in that case call qualified teachers to fill that post,” Nikodemus said.