Teachers in Bermuda end strike
HAMILTON, Bermuda - School teachers in Bermuda have returned to the classroom after their sick-out yesterday following a call from Education Commissioner Kalmar Richards.
Teachers initially started their industrial action to emphasise their grievances of inadequate staffing and resources, technology problems, health and safety fears among other grave concerns.
Anthony Wolffe, Vice President of the Bermuda Union of Teachers (BUT), confirmed that the strike would not continue today.
Even though teachers will return to work, Wolffe said that the educators' morale will be at a " low".
He disclosed that the industrial action was a last resort to getting the attention of the Ministry of Education to deal with concerns raised by the union.
Wolffe added that they have given the government a list of 23 problems that needed to be tackled and they will all aide in their attempt to save public education for future generations.
“First, we demand the retraction of the use of standards-based grading until there is proof, with supporting data, that the infrastructure is in place for its implementation and that all teachers are properly trained and have mastered its use”, Wolffe said.
Richards explained that she is ready to start re-engaging with the union through the Labour Relations Office as she sees it as beneficial for the children.
She also noted that the new standards-based grading system had been the main concern raised by the union.
“No teacher wants to harm the education of our young people and all teachers want to resolve this situation so they can do what they love doing, helping Bermuda’s young people”, said the union's president Shannon James.
She also noted that yesterday's industrial action shows the extent that teachers and principals are willing to go to put an end to the issues within education.