SGBs, teachers two sides of same coin
I HAVE every sympathy for the teachers employed by school governing bodies earning a pittance (“Bleak Christmas for KZN teachers”, Daily News, December 4).
Fuel prices mean R1 500 a month will only be sufficient to pay their transport costs, leaving little to nothing to live on.
However, having served on a governing body at a public school a few years ago, I have sympathy for the individuals who serve on these bodies, too.
Theirs is a thankless task. They have to make often unpopular decisions concerning fee increases and other matters, and walk a tightrope between ensuring the interests of parents and pupils are served, without overstepping the mark and treading on the principal’s toes.
Called to meetings to give their input, most parents cannot find the time to attend, but then find plenty of time to complain about decisions taken in their absence.
SGBs employ extra teachers to offer a better service to pupils – not for any other reason.
And they would pay these teachers much better if all parents paid their children’s school fees.
I agree with your editorial that it is unconscionable for teachers to be paid R1 500 a month, but I submit that it is also unconscionable for parents who have no qualms paying for their children to wear the latest designer clothing and to have cellphones, to baulk at paying fees.
Having failed to get parents to appreciate where their priorities should lie, I confess I don’t know where the solution lies. But at the end of the day, the teachers have the choice to work for R1 500 a month, or not. D MKHIZE Durban