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Only six teachers turn up at Langley Park Government School

Only six teachers turn up at Langley Park Government School


Parents of students attending the Langley Park Government School were forced to take their children home yesterday morning, after only six teachers turned up at the school, on the first day of the new academic year.{{more}}

One concerned mother told SEARCHLIGHT that the school, which has over 200 students, has been suffering from a “serious” teacher shortage for over a year.

Desiree Pilgrim, whose son is in Grade 1, said that she was shocked that the Ministry of Education had not assigned new teachers to the school.

“We have to struggle to get our children to school, and now they are just coming into school to play!” she said.

“We need teachers for all the classes,” Pilgrim added.

She said that the shortage in teachers began last February, with the death of one of the school’s teachers.

The school never received a replacement, she said.

In addition to that, Pilgrim said, several teachers have been transferred to other schools, but Langley Park Government, again, did not receive replacements.

“We need teachers … we want our children to become something!” she said.

Deputy principal Morlines Charles told SEARCHLIGHT that she spoke with an official at the Ministry of Education yesterday, and was assured that the issue will be rectified.

“The Ministry said they will send out teachers as soon as possible,” Charles said.

She explained that this is not the first time that the school has enquired about the situation.

“It’s been going on for so long that I’ve just got accustomed to it!”

With only six teachers currently on rota, some of the classes have to be combined, which Pilgrim said is unfair pressure on the teachers.

“You have the Grade 2 and Grade 3 students together. How will that work with one teacher when they’re doing different sets of work?” she queried.

“If the children don’t perform they want to blame the teachers. But that’s not fair on them!”

A teacher at the school, who wished to remain anonymous, said there is only one teacher assigned to 45 kindergarten students.

“It’s ridiculous!” she said. “How they expect one person to deal with all those children on a daily basis?”

She also said that in the last academic term, because of the staff shortage, Grade 4 teachers had to teach the Grade 3 students as well.

“This is long overdue!”

Pilgrim also said that she and a group of other parents have decided that if by the end of the week the Ministry of Education has not assigned teachers to the school, they will be keeping their children at home.

“It doesn’t make sense they come into school and just run up and down,” she said. “The longer this goes on, the more they [students] will suffer.”

Up to press time, SEARCHLIGHT was unable to reach officials from the Ministry of Education for a comment on the matter.