The Teachers and Educational Workers Union (TEWU) has called for an urgent recruitment of non-teaching staff with the implementation of the double track senior high school (SHS) system in the country.
That, it said, was very important to the smooth implementation of the system.
â€œTEWU is very much informed that with the free SHS, the student numbers have increased significantly and with this double-track system, the number is going to further balloon, and this is going to affect the workload of various workers on the campuses of the SHS.
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â€œIt is unacceptable to see few staff providing services in the area of sanitation, cooking, driving, library, security, etc. in a situation of huge increase in student numbers under the free SHS,â€ a statement signed by the General Secretary of the union, Mr Augustine Karbo, said.
The statement urged the government not to ignore the unionâ€™s role in the implementation of the double-track senior high school (SHS) system since it was very much aware that the free SHS was a major government policy and as such any intervention for its smooth and continuous implementation needed to be looked at in terms of the complimentary roles of all workers in the education sector.
It said all workers; teaching and non-teaching staff were partners in the development in the provision of quality education in the training of excellent and efficient human resource for the country and beyond.
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â€œTEWU, therefore, expects the focus to be on how to ensure that appropriate numbers of both non-teaching and teaching staff are engaged to make the system work very well. It is our expectation that the government will take the well-being and welfare of the workers serious,â€ it said.
It said TEWU was a major partner in the development process to provide quality education in the country and, therefore, demanded mutual respect and recognition of the non-teaching staff in the school environment since it was not only teachers who were to impact on students.
â€œThe behaviour of the non-teaching and teaching staff go a long way to reflect on moral, discipline and character of students.
In fact, you have the non-teaching staff interacting with students in one way or the other, as they undertake various activities such as sanitation, security, catering, driving, library services administrative functions, accounting functions, laboratory services, etc. to ensure conducive environment for both teaching and learning on the various campuses,â€ it said.
It said, for instance, without adequate security, the teacher would not have the sound mind to teach and the students too would not have the sound mind to learn.
â€œWe urge the Management of the Ghana Education Service (GES) and the Ministry of Education to look at these critical areas and give it a serious attention in their consideration for the recruitment of additional hands in making the double track intervention successful.
We urge the Ministry of Finance to prioritise the financial clearance for the recruitment decision to be madeâ€ the statement said.
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Moreover, it said the major issues relating to the Single Spine Salary Structure, especially those relating to the critical support premium for the remaining classes of workers in the non-teaching staff category needed to be addressed with dispatch.
â€œWe wish to urge the government to invest heavily in the development of school infrastructure and address the facility gaps as a long-term measure since the double-track intervention is an interim measure.
â€œWe urge the non-teaching staff to give of their best to ensure that the teaching and learning environment and the surroundings of the schools are really clean for good academic work to take place,â€ the statement emphasised.