I waited with great patience for the executives of the Guyana Teachers Union to bid New Year greetings to the teachers they serve, but I’ll wait no more. So before the year gets a day older and quickly fades out of its embryonic stage of newness, I the undersigned would like to express on behalf of the executives of the Upper Demerara Branch of the Guyana Teachers’ Union, a happy and productive 2014 to all teachers around the country.
With all the challenges that exist in this beautiful profession that we are faced with, let us in this new year continue more relentlessly in our efforts in making education fun and relevant. Let us aspire to make the teaching-learning experience one that is not monotonous but exciting, and our pupils/students more aware as to why we do what we do.
In this New Year let us all strive to extend our efforts in which we teach the nation’s children to teach themselves when they are out of the school’s learning environment.
In 2014 let us always be cognizant of the ever-present fact that each student is unique and they differ in many respects. Therefore our methods, strategies and approaches in delivering our content must be broad-based to cater for those differences and abilities.
As educators let us be reminded that it is of vital importance that we keep up to date with what is new, not only in our subject area or field of study but the changing world.
Let us take up the challenge to re-inspire and motivate ourselves as well as learn new things on a consistent and regular basis and have fun in the process.
In this New Year let us be passionate about what we teach and continue to provide challenges for the nation’s children. Let us continue relentlessly in encouraging creativity in our students and challenge them to think outside the box for new possibilities and solutions that will contribute to a better society, a better Guyana and world for all of us.
I pen these words with the hope that this New Year 2014, will be one in which teachers and this noble profession will be given the seriousness that has been denied for far too long from government and the Guyana Teachers Union. The seriousness in realizing and acting on that realization that teachers need better salaries, more resources, better representation from the GTU, more recognition and respect for their labour. The seriousness in realizing that teachers not just teach academic lessons to pupils/students, but also help and guide them in every sphere of their lives, by giving the right tools, advice and guidance.
I pen these words with the hope and expectation that this year, 2014 of the Guyana Teachers Union election, a new cadre of leaders will emerge to bring about the desired change that is needed and has been absent for too long. Change that will rebuild the lost confidence and bring true representation that once existed under the likes of George Cave, Lance Baptiste, and Bertram Hamilton.
I do not hesitate to ask my fellow colleagues of this noble profession who are members of the union, to put aside your resentment, your bitterness and frustration towards the union due to the executives’ lacklustre and lethargic approach to what unionism and service embodies. But they should put away their disappointment and dissatisfaction and become fully involved in the process of change. They should be involved in the electoral process and vote for a change of some of the executives at the GTU. Teachers should be a part of the change they long for and need to see. They should ensure that they get their ballots to vote and make their contribution to the change that is coming.
I ask my fellow colleagues, the teachers of this land, the true nation-builders, to be the change they long for. Happy New Year.
Upper Demerara Branch