'Improve teaching conditions'

Sne Masuku

Sne Masuku

Teachers unions in KwaZulu-Natal say the incoming provincial MEC for education Senzo Mchunu will have to address the many problems that outgoing MEC Ina Cronjé had failed to deliver on.

These include improved salary packages that include allowances to entice teachers to work in rural areas, and improved working conditions to retain teachers and attract youth into the profession.

It was announced yesterday that the ANC's provincial education portfolio committee chairperson Senzo Mchunu is to take over from Cronjé.

The SA Democratic Teachers Union and the National Teachers Union say safety is the main challenge that Mchunu should treat as priority.

Sixteen teachers were killed while on duty in the past five years.

Both unions hit out at Cronjé's administration for not providing security guards at schools despite the process having been put in place months ago.

Natu's Allen Thompson said that there were many promises that the department of education did not deliver on, describing the crucial ones as the improvement of the matric pass rate in the province and the remuneration of teachers in the rural areas.

"We believe that rural allowances would definitely attract qualified teachers to these areas," he said.

Sadtu spokesperson Mbuyiseni Mathonsi said Mchunu was "someone who experienced the hardships that came with apartheid" and therefore should perform.