THE long awaited ‘African’ World Cup is set to start tomorrow and the whole world will for once focus on Africa for a good reason. To me this is a historical moment that teachers should be able to explain to their students clearly.
Students need to know the value that Africa as a continent stands to gain from hosting the biggest sports event in the world.
As we follow the events in South Africa, we as teachers should not lose focus of what is expected of us. Teachers should not waste time in the staff-rooms talking about the previous night’s football game and forget to teach. Students should be kept in check so that the games don’t draw away their primary focus on academics.
With the World Cup pumping some life into our lives lately; things only got better at the beginning of this week when I came across a story titled, “Teachers to get paid on time.” This is surely the best news and is only sweet music to Rwanda’s teachers.
This is supposed to bring an end to the problem of delayed payments that teachers have become so accustomed to, not just in Rwanda but in most developing countries.
According to the story, the Ministry of Education reached an agreement with the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Local Government, the Teachers Service Commission, the Central Bank and Bank Populaire to expedite the process of salary disbursement for the teachers.
The fact that several partners are involved in the salary disbursement process meant that teachers have been facing the wrath of bureaucracy and eventually getting their salaries very late.
The new arrangement will see the salary payment process kicking off on the 10th of every month, so that by the 28th, the teachers have received their sweat’s due.
In other words, the concerned parties have already started working on the June salary since today is 10th. This is because the same story quoted Emmanuel Muvunyi, the Executive Secretary of the Teachers’ Service Commission saying that the new salary processing procedures take effect this month.
Like the supporters of particular football teams in the current World Cup, teachers will be hoping that this amazing revelation is adhered to by all the parties concerned so that it does not suffer a still birth.
The problem of delayed salaries for teachers has for long been a stale song only tempered by endless promises from the Ministry of Education. Delayed salaries are definitely a nuisance to teachers.
Whenever one’s salary is delayed, one accumulates debts and over a period of time, a teacher in this situation will also lose credit worthiness. No one desires to offer credit to a teacher whose salary is perennially delayed.
Tales of teachers being evicted by landlords due to delayed salaries are too numerous for me to list in this small space. Teachers with loans to service often end up paying heavy bank fines because their salaries are delayed.
When the salary is delayed the teacher has to find ways of making ends meet at a time when one end is simply missing. This greatly affects the teacher’s motivation to perform and later reflects on the performance of the students or the school in general.
Teachers face many problems but if this one is solved then things will certainly be better for the dispensers of knowledge and custodians of tomorrow’s future. The caveat here though is that the good program is for teachers of government schools.
There is still a huge salary problem in the private schools with some schools not paying at all. Salary delays are now part and parcel of most privately run schools.
Teachers in government schools may be smiling but it is of no use if their colleagues in private schools are suffering for they too teach Rwandan students. Such students also deserve to have motivated teachers standing before them each day.