Brain drain a growing problem in education
HE EDITOR, Madam:
Jamaica Teacher’s Association (JTA) president Owen Speid has declared that more teachers are going to leave for greener pastures. This is a no brainer to say that because the current situation as it stands no one would question his assumption.
There is ample evidence to substantiate that people are leaving the profession to get a better life oversees. We would have liked our best teachers to remain in the island and try and fix our many problems which are deemed difficult to deal with.
The classes are too overcrowded and this is creating a very unfavourable environment for teachers and pupil to actually get the best chance to learn. The student/teacher ratio has to be balanced a bit more for us to find favour in the context that we can live together in harmony.
Some schools are not properly ventilated to provide the necessary energy from the students to display optimum performances. This matter of the swirling heat has yet to be addressed with the global warming phenomenon on our heels each and every day. Teacher migration issue has to be addressed and urgently too before it reaches crisis proportion and subsequently have to get teachers from abroad and pay those expatriates better than our locals.
The salary package we are getting needs to be looked at with more urgency because we cannot stand by a memorandum of understanding with our meagre disposable income.
Teachers are living just above the poverty line and we are certain more can be done to straighten out things before it is termed as extremely bad. Some of my colleagues who have to pay rent are having it very difficult. This is because they have to ensure that the money stretches to the next month with the bills to pay and compulsory savings. If the matter of salary is not a major part of the government’s plan the education system will be in shambles in short order.