Anti-violence survey should help with clearer policies

POSTED: 03/27/13 12:21 PM

St. Maarten – The anti-violence survey that is being circulated among teachers in various schools should be attended to without any obstruction, the Windward Islands Teachers Union (Witu) says. The union designed the scientific instrument to gather information on the level of violence that is perpetrated against teachers at the hands of students.

“We are living in a democratic country. Teachers should have the right to fill in the survey, be honest and not be restricted by anyone. We hope that the teachers would not be intimidated in filling out the survey,” Witu president Claire Elshot stated.
A copy of the survey was sent electronically to various school boards and the Minister of Education. Elshot admitted that some Catholic schools, the Milton Peters College and the Orange School are still to get copies of the survey.

“The reason why they did not receive it as yet so the copying of the survey took more time than we expected,” the union leader explained.
She reiterated that the outcome of the survey should lead to the union having the necessary tools to request an amendment or adjustment to policies on what types of punishment can be meted out and when a child can be disciplined.

“Those guidelines would also help to protect our teachers against different types of disciplinary measures when they are the ones thinking that they are disciplining children and using certain methods to discipline children and then they are faced with disciplinary measures. So therefore let us get a clear cut policy so that we can know and teachers can know exactly where their rights and privileges are when it comes to dealing with certain structural problems of children such as behavior. Then the law would be clear for everyone,” Elshot stated.

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