By Aaron Humes: The Belize National Teacher’s Union (BNTU) has denounced the treatment of a teacher at St. Luke Methodist School in Belize City as nothing less than outright bullying.
The teacher, through her school Union representative, has contacted the Union for intervention.
President Elena Smith mentioned that the teacher in question and others had first approached the Union in February after feeling they were denied their rights during a staff meeting at which they were not present.
Keesha Young, the BNTU’s Executive Secretary who deals directly with teacher cases such as this one, confirmed that teachers are entitled to a one-hour lunch break and that it is “ridiculous” to bar teachers from being able to use bathroom facilities solely for the sake of, in this case, ensuring that the students are not left unattended.
Smith added that teachers can come to the Union to advocate before going to school management as the Union is legally recognized, but the Union will not intervene on its own accord in school affairs.
The Union notes that some of the most unlikely persons are accused of bullying, intimidation, and other unsavory tactics, but there is a kind of double standard for accountability of the senior personnel.
“If we are serious about ending this kind of abuse, the Ministry of Education must seriously look at dealing with these individuals,” Smith said, citing a manager that has refused to respond to them on questions of cases at a particular school.