TTUTA Tobago officer Bradon Roberts has called on the Ministry of Education and the THA Division of Education, Research and Technology to urgently address the issue of leave classification for teachers on the island.
He made the call in an interview with reporters on Wednesday, shortly after being reinstalled as the association’s Tobago representative for a second three-year term.
The simple ceremony, which was presided over by TTUTA president Martin Lum Kin, took place at the Scarborough RC School. Vincent David, of the association’s elections commission, administered the oath of office.
Roberts said teachers’ leave still has to be sent to Trinidad to be classified.
“Unfortunately, we are still living in this world – 2023 – where the division still has to send leave that is taken to Trinidad to be classified.
“So teachers are given 14 days' sick leave and should they have to go over for whatever reason, whether it’s surgery or serious illness, any day over that 14 days they have to send that to Trinidad to be classified.”
Accusing the ministry of paying very little attention to those teachers, Roberts said many of them are being seriously affected.
“A teacher who has a particular day to be accounted for would not be able to get their increments, have their maternity approved, because they would need a continuity of service. Persons are retiring and are unable to get their pensions or whatever benefits because they have outstanding leave to be classified. There are some persons from 2007 – and we are in 2023 – waiting on the ministry to classify some of those leave.”