Student unions seek dialogue over hiring new teachers

Student unions are calling for negotiations with concerned government agencies to discuss their demands to immediately address the plight of new graduates in the education sector who have not yet been hired despite the thousands of vacancies in the basic education schools.

The student unions from Yangon University of Education and Sagaing University of Education as well as batch 12 students who completed education training in Sagaing University of Education have sent their demands last week to relevant agencies, including the education ministry and the parliament, but there have been no reply.

“We will re-send our statement on July 31 and also asked for negotiation related with our statement within one week,” said Ko Soe Thura Kyaw, chairman for the Yangon University of Education of Student Union during a press conference at Myanmar Journalist Network office on July 29.

On their July 21 statement, the student unions statement called on the government to announce in detail the start of the working day for students who finished training in 2016-2017; to credit as working experience the year 2017-2018 for those graduates who continued studying while waiting to be hired; and make arrangement to hire students who have completed trainings from education universities and colleges in time for the start of the school year.

The students sent their statement on July 24 to the Education Minister, the National Education Policy Commission, the State Counsellor Office and the Department of Basic Education and Education Promoting Committee of the Hluttaw, demanding that the parties respond to their requests on July 28, but they have not received reply from any of them.

“If they do not respond to our requests again, we will take more decisive actions, including street demonstrations,” said Ko Thet Paing Oo, chairman for the Sagaing University of Education Student Union. “I would like to add that street demonstrations are just the start of our efforts.”

The unions have launched on July 25, a Green Ribbon campaign that enjoins the public to wear green ribbons to support their advocacies.

The Yangon University of Education Student Union said the universities authorities are giving pressure to the unions over the green ribbon campaign.

“After we started the campaign, university authorities met with us. They did not say anything about our campaign but told us to hold student union elections even without the students’ request and to appoint advisory board which is organized with teachers for student union,” said Ko Soe Thura Kyaw.

There are over 10,000 new graduates from two education universities and 24 education colleges who have completed education training and are waiting to be hired, the union said.

The National Network for Education Reform, an organisation that advocates reforms in the education sector, released a statement on July 28 that said the lack of clear policy, management weaknesses and centralisation of the education system, caused the failure of the Ministry of Education to appoint teachers in time.

Source : Myanmar Times

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