GNAT fumes, disagrees with extension of instructional hours in Basic Schools

GNAT National President and General Secratery
GNAT National President and General Secratery

Leadership of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) has locked horns with the management of the Ghana Education Service (GES) over extention of instructional hours in Public Basic Schools.

On 20th August, 2021, the Municipal Director of Education for New Juaben South, in the Eastern Region Mr. Victor deGraft-Etsison has issued an urgent directive to all Heads of Public Basic Schools within the Municipality to close school at 3:00pm instead of the usual 2:00pm.

The Municipal Director’s letter said, all schools in the New Juaben South are expected to now start classes at 8.00 hours GMT (8:00am) and close at 15.00 hours GMT (3:00pm) effective Monday, 23rd August, 2021 until otherwise directed.

Advertisement
The letter from Municipal Director of Education for New Juaben South to Head teachers
The letter from Municipal Director of Education for New Juaben South to Head teachers

READ ALSO: GES invites Teacher Unions for an emergency meeting on Conditions of Service

But, according to the umbrella body of Ghanaian teachers, the directive from the Municipal Education Director is arbitrary and an imposition on teachers and must be withdrawn with immediate effect.

Mr. Thomas Tanko Musah, the General Secretary of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), in a letter to the office of the Director-General said, the directive to extend closing time for Public Basic Schools lacks merit, and has violated the current Collective Agreement and Code of Conduct for Staff of the Ghana Education Service (GES) signed by GES and teacher Unions.

The Union is therefore calling on the Director-General of the Ghana Education Service Professor Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa to immediately instruct the Municipal Education Director to call off the imposed directive because they will not accept it.

The Association further said, they find this directive unacceptable, and against the letter and spirit of Article 3.3 of the Code of Conduct for Staff of the Ghana Education Service specifically,

a) Article 3.3(i) which reads: Working hours per day shall be as prescribed by Law,

b) Article 3.3(ii): Contact hours for staff and time for reporting for duty shall be determined through negotiations by GES and the Unions, and

Article 3.3(iv): A staff may be required to work beyond the required time in certain circumstances to be determined by the head, or GES and the Unions.

Advertisement

Mr. Thomas Tanko Musah again said, the circular in circulation breaches or offends Section 13 of the Collective Agreement for Staff within the Ghana Education Service (GES), August, 2020, specifically,

Section 13.2 which stipulates that: All other conditions of Work shall be determined by a Joint Negotiating Committee, made up of ten (10) persons each from the Govermment Team and the Union.

“We again make reference to the Press Statement o the Pre-tertiary Education Unions (GNAT, NAGRAT and CCT-GH), of 10 August, 2021, and the item on Contact and
Working Hours, in which we reminded the Ghana Education Service, that the hours teachers are required to work per day and per week should be determined by the Ghana Education Service and the Teacher Unions, as required by the Collective Agreement.” The letter said.

“We are not sure whether the directive is general for all schools across the country, or an initiative of the New Juaben South Directorate of Education on its own accord, and for whatever reason.

“Whatever it is, the Ghana National Association of Teachers, GNAT, finds it a breach of Union trust and practice, within the context of the Code of Conduct for staff of the Ghana Education Service (GES), both documents being the regulatory frameworks for education in the country.”

“In the light of the above, we find the directive arbitrary and an imposition, since it has not arisen out of any consultations between the concerned parties (1.e. the Ghana Education Service and the Unions). We therefore call for its immediate withdrawal and to serve notice that any attempt to force it on teachers would be resisted fiercely.” GNAT said.

According to Thomas Tanko Musah, the Association hopes the Ghana Education Service would see reason, and listen to them accordingly, to engender industrial peace in the country.

Read below, the full letter from the General Secretary of GNAT.

SOURCE: Coverghana.com.gh

Advertisement
Advertisement

Leave a Reply