‘Teachers unaware of legislation’

Opposition MPs, Alvick Maharaj and Premila Kumar during break between sessions at the Parliament complex in Suva on Monday, Sep 11, 2023. Picture: JONACANI LALAKOBAU

Teachers being unaware of the legislation guiding their profession is a problem that still exists, says Opposition member Premila Kumar.

She said this when responding to the ministerial statement delivered by Education Minister Aseri Radrodro in Parliament on Monday.

“During my short period at the Ministry of Education, I visited more than 60 schools, and I’ve had consultations with school management committees, with teachers, with parents, with students and even with tertiary institutions,” Ms Kumar said.

“Whenever I visited schools, and whenever I addressed the teachers during consultations, I understood that teachers were not even aware of the legislation guiding their profession.

“This is how bad things are.”

Ms Kumar said when teachers were trained in universities, the laws were not discussed with them.

“They don’t know about child protection legislation, and they don’t know about sex offender legislation which is in place.

“It is extremely important that the tertiary institutions need to support the Ministry of Education by producing quality teachers.

“Teachers, who are able to drive change, and are able to develop skills in our students rather than rote learning, and exam centred teaching, which is what we see today.”

She said it was one area that needed to be looked at very seriously to improve the quality of teachers.

“And if we don’t change that, no matter what we do, at a national level, we won’t be able to achieve the good outcome that the minister is thinking that we’ll be able to derive from the Education summit.”

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