Fri | Sep 22, 2023

Education minister says relationship with JTA president remains cordial

Published:Wednesday | May 31, 2023 | 5:55 PM
Minister of Education Fayval Williams (left) and President of the Jamaica Teachers’ Association, La Sonja Harrison - File photo.

Minister of Education Fayval Williams has denied assertions that her relationship with the president of the Jamaica Teachers' Association (JTA), La Sonja Harrison, has broken down.

Williams said since becoming minister she has prided herself with having a very cordial and professional relationship with the JTA.

“I take seriously their monthly meetings that are scheduled. I ensure that whatever issues come to the fore, research is done and we are able to respond at the next meeting. I respect the Jamaica Teachers' Association. I respect the role that they play but I just have to respond when there is mischief in the system. The ministry can't be silent. The ministry has to respond to say that is not so or this is how it is from our perspective,” Williams said during today's post-Cabinet press briefing.

Her comments follow a release from the education ministry on Tuesday in which the claim of a teacher receiving only $6.68 in salary for March 2023 was described as “blatantly false”.

In the said release, she called for rationality to prevail and for the specifics of the teachers' situation to be presented to the education ministry to allow adequate research and response as a destabilised education sector serves no one.

“We have to respond if someone is going around talking about the ministry not responding, talking about generalities. We have to respond to let Jamaicans know what's the other side. We have to bring balance to the situation,” the minister remarked. 

- Judana Murphy 

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