Interim teachers roped in to help
TEMPORARY teachers have been roped in to help Eastern Cape schools with their winter programmes.
This comes after the provincial department of education and labour unions agreed at a special meeting in Bhisho on Friday to reinforce teachers.
The meeting was intended to map out the implementation plan to reinstate some of the temporary teachers. However, it is unlikely most of these will get their jobs back when the recruitment drive kicks off next term.
Education experts have welcomed the decision to rope in temporary teachers, but stressed that more permanent teachers were needed.
Earlier this month, acting superintendent-general Mthunywa Ngonzo brokered a collective agreement with labour unions, which included the South African Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu), following discussions with national director-general of the department of basic education Bobby Soobrayan.
Sadtu provincial secretary Mncekeleli Ndongeni confirmed yesterday temporary teachers were to take part in programmes.
"We said that we don't have a problem with that idea. But what is going to be challenging is the implementation of it."
However, Ndongeni said there was a plan to reinstate other temporary teachers.
Education department spokesman Loyiso Pulumani also confirmed temporary teachers would be part of the programmes.
"Those that we are going to utilise during the winter classes are going to get a stipends."
Temporary teachers were also expected to assist in the preparations of the Annual National Assessments and implementation of the Curriculum Assessment Policy Statements.
Public Service Accountability Monitoring education researcher Zukiswa Kota said although she welcomed the idea of involving all temporary teachers, the department was in dire need of clear strategic interventions.
Independent education expert Graeme Bloch said: "All I want is for the department and teachers to work together, to employ the maximum number of teachers and ensure they are well (and) appropriately distributed by teaching area."
East London education expert Dr Ken Alston said Sadtu should be involved in assisting teachers in improving education in the province.