The Teaching Service Commission (TSC) refutes definitively the claims reported in last Saturday’s (September 28) issue of the Stabroek News where the General Secretary of the Guyana Teachers’ Union (GTU) alleged that the TSC has been denying teachers their just and legal promotions every year by ignoring the agreed criteria for promotions and advancement.
The TSC does in fact use the agreed criteria to award points to the candidate, and over the last few years the TSC has gone even further in order to have a more comprehensive method of advancement and promotion by including the recommendation of the supervising officers as part of its consideration before making the final decision.
The reason for including the said recommendation was because the experience of the TSC showed that the agreed criteria alone could not capture vital and necessary elements for the purposes of providing a complete analysis of the teacher’s profile.
Since the last promotion exercise the TSC has had consultations with the Ministry of Education resulting in a few important decisions being taken. Among them is the need for evidence to support a ‘Not Recommended’ statement by regional education officers. This statement must include charges for any offences, if any, with the accompanying report of the ‘Hearing’ held. If the event in question does not necessitate a hearing by the TSC then copies of warning letters must also be sent and kept for TSC files. In any event, all such actions must occur prior to the period of promotion.
Furthermore, in relation to the issue mentioned by the President of the Guyana Teachers’ Union at the Black Bush Secondary School, evidence to support the ‘Not Recommended’ statement was submitted by the Regional Education Office. This evidence was shown to the General Secretary of the GTU at a meeting and had there been any discrepancies discovered within the evidence, then this ought to have been brought to the attention of TSC. The Headmaster referred to had several charges more serious than cases of insubordination.
The composition of the TSC with representative commissioners from the major political parties, and stakeholders including the Guyana Teachers’ Union and its constitutional independence contradicts any allegations of “favouritism” and “certain connections.” Furthermore, decisions on promotions are taken by consensus.