A boycott of classes by public school teachers, particularly from the Monrovia Consolidated School System (MCSS) in Monrovia and its environs on Monday, 14 August led many students disappointed as they could not write their scheduled first marking period tests.
The leadership of the MCSS Teachers Association on Sunday, 13 October issued a statement, threatening go-slow in demand of two months’ (August and September) salary arrears and better working environment.
Students of the State-owned Williams V. S. Tubman High School, who arrived on campus Monday in readiness to write Biology and Geographic tests were shock to learn that no instructors were available to administer the tests.
Observing that the students were angry with the absence of their instructors from the classrooms, the Principal of Tubman High School Mr. Alassis Goldore, immediately cited the students in the school’s basketball court for dialogue.
During the dialogue, Principal Goldore first apologized to the students for any in connivances the absence of teachers of the school have caused them, assuring that everything is being done to ensure teachers return to the classroom.He attributed the situation to what he described as a text message from GN Bank Liberia (Limited) informing MCSS teachers about their August 2019 salary being ready for payment, compelling them to troop at the bank for pay.
He assured the students that teachers of the school would return class today, Tuesday, 15 October to administer the scheduled tests, pleading with the students to exercise patience.
At the Slipway Elementary School operated by the MCSS in Slipway Community opposite Water Street, Monrovia students of the afternoon session were outdoor playing football due to teachers’ boycott of classes.
Similarly, when this reporter visited the A. Glenn Elementary School on 12th Street in Sinkor, only the administrative staff of the institution was seen quietly seated at the front entrance of the school building, as teachers abandoned the classroom to receive their pay at the GN Bank.The absence of teachers paralyzed regular academic activities at the school, while students were asked to go home and return today, Tuesday at which time their teachers would be in the classroom.
The boycott by public school teachers followed similar action last month by health workers across the country in demand of salary, tools and improved conditions at their respective places of work.It took the intervention of the Minister of Health Doctor Wilhelmina Jallah, who dialogued with the leadership of the National Health Workers Union of Liberia or NAHWUL to call off the strike.
Health workers across Liberia and the government thru the Ministry of Health reached a compromise on Friday, 27 September which led the former to call off the weeklong strike that nearly paralyzed the entire health sector of the country.The protest led a group of pregnant women to erect roadblocks in Du-Port Road community, Paynesville in demand of health services amid reports of deaths in some parts of the country because of absence of doctors and nurses in hospitals.
The situation forced the Minister of Health Doctor Wilhelmina Jallah, who had formed part of President George MannehWeah’s official delegation to the 74th General Assembly of the United Nations in New York to immediately return home in order to dialogue with the NAHWUL leadership on the strike. By Emmanuel Mondaye–Editing by Jonathan Browne