April 28, 2013

Ugandan teachers feel neglected by the government

Ugandan Education News - Ugandan teachers feel neglected by the government

Hardly a year after Ugandan government promised teachers a 30% salary raise, they are complaining that the pledge has not been honored.

Last year, President Yoweri Museveni promised teachers a salary raise after they met him at State House Entebbe to resolve a strike that was threatening the education sector. However, they were only given a 15% increment.

According to the 2013/2014 budget framework, they won’t be getting any salary increment.

During a Uganda National Teachers Union (UNATU) symposium at Hotel Triangle Kampala Wednesday, teachers complained that the Government has turned a deaf ear to their pleas.

“We are in class, but only physically. Psychologically, we are absent,’’ said Bernard Onyango, teacher at the Ntinda School for the Deaf.

“How do you concentrate on your class needs when you are thinking of how you will get money for rent, supper or your child who has been sent home because of tuition arrears?” asked Onyango, who has been a teacher for over 37 years.

The symposium held under the theme “every child needs a good teacher – one qualified, well-supported, and motivated, was held in commemoration of the global action week on education, which ends today.

Onyango, a father of eight, said the Government was frustrating them.

“Apart from waiting for pay, I don’t know the exact amount I earn. I am not sure of my salary. Today I get 300,000, the next day I find 340,000 and the next 290, 000,” he lamented.

He said that since last year, the Government had stopped giving them payslips.

“I am 60 years old and next year, I will be retiring. But where will I get school fees for the children? I am disillusioned,’’ Onyango said.

Margret Rwabushaija, the union’s chairperson, said the Government had done little to improve the learning environment.

“The Government is not recruiting enough teachers and in most cases, a teacher handles over 100 pupils,” Rwabushaija said.

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Link to original article:  Ugandan Teachers, Government Neglect - New Vision

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