Union to push for SBO teacher salary scales

POSTED: 03/26/13 11:20 AM

St. Maarten – With the opening of the newly constructed advanced secondary vocational training school in Cayhill fast approaching, the Windward Islands Teachers Union now wants attention to be placed on the regulation of salary scales for SBO teachers.
These teachers are specialized in theory and practical which counts as double work and according to Witu president Claire Elshot policies should be put in place to preserve the rights of this category of teachers. The union has therefore requested that Education Minister Silveria Jacobs get to work on crafting official salary scales for SBO teachers.

“We have noted that we are having SBO schools that are being developed structurally. So far there is one conflict on this specific issue. There are no scales and the teacher feels that he/she is being underpaid because the scales that are being used to be able to determine the salary are scales that are not for that level. The fact that you are teaching on a combination level like that some people definitely feel that they are being short changed,” Elshot said.
The union said that it recognizes that several developments are being made in education on St. Maarten and the SBO level is one that is definitely needed. However teachers want to feel safe when they make the transition to the new institution.
“In 2008 when we got new salary scales, that level of education was not present as yet so we do not have scales for them nor do we have the job descriptions as all the other areas of education has gotten,” Elshot said.

The new advanced secondary vocational training school that is currently under construction in Cay Hill is expected to completed and handed over by April.
The union says it is also still awaiting the landsbesluit which is the country resolution that recognizes them as workers in public service of Country St. Maarten.
Other civil servants have already gotten their ordinances and participated in swearing in ceremonies but teachers seem to have been forgotten, the union president said.

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