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'Every effort' being made to pay teachers money owed, says Government

Published:Tuesday | August 12, 2014 | 1:19 PM

The Government says it is making every effort to meet the August deadline for the payment of outstanding retroactive amounts to public sector workers.

The teachers are owed $1 billion by the government following a reclassification exercise in 2007.

The Jamaica Teachers’ Association says its members are upset given indications that the deadline could be missed because of an audit being carried out by the Ministry of Finance to verify the amounts to be paid to teachers.

However, Education Minister Ronald Thwaites told The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre this morning that the Government is trying to meet the deadline.

The JTA president, Dr Mark Nicely says teachers have not ruled out taking action if they do not get their money.

Meanwhile, the Education Ministry is rejecting claims from the teachers' union that it is breaching regulations governing the leave entitlement of teachers.

JTA President Dr Mark Nicely says the education ministry has directed principals and school board chairmen to limit the number of teachers who are allowed to go on leave to five per cent of the teaching staff.

He says this is against the Code of Regulations which permits up to 10 per cent.

However, the Education Minister says no law is being breached.

The Government is reforming the leave entitlements in the education sector.

It says the current system is costing $2.5 billion and this is unsustainable.

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