‘Overzealous MEC’, Sadtu go head to head over poorly performing principals

2014-02-05 17:34

The MEC of Education in Limpopo, Dikeledi Magadzi, and the SA Democratic Teachers’ Union (Sadtu) are at each others’ throats over her decision to reprimand the principals of poorly performing schools.

Last week, Magadzi read the riot act to about 389 principals, district and circuit managers of poorly performing schools in the province. She also asked them to submit turnaround strategies to their districts by the end of February.

Sadtu in Limpopo has lashed out at the MEC, saying a “gung-ho attitude” is not necessary when dealing with such delicate matters.

In a strongly worded statement, the union’s secretary in the province, Matome Raphasha, said: “In a carefully choreographed media spectacle the MEC decided to throw caution to the wind and fired a tirade at the poor principals without due regard to their human dignity and respect, which forms part of their basic human rights. In a highly condescending manner the poor principals were called one by one to make a public declaration of how they were going to improve the results of their schools.”

He said the “overzealous MEC was employing intimidating tactics against the principals”. “We are on record as saying that we will not countenance underperformance of any nature as a union, more so if it comes about as a result of dereliction of duty by those in authority (read principals). Equally, we do not believe that a knee-jerk response will solve some of the problems as the MEC wants to believe,” he said.

If the MEC wants to know what causes poor performance, she should look no further than her department, Raphasha said.

“Just recently the MEC presided over the funeral of a learner who fell into a toilet. Such deathtraps of toilets are ubiquitous by their presence everywhere in the entire province. Do we have to remind the MEC that her department has failed to spend close to R800 million earmarked for school infrastructure in 2013 due to sheer incompetency? As we speak now the majority of schools in the province have to make do with teaching in dilapidated buildings that have no infrastructure,” Raphasha said.

He also complained about the lack of teacher development programmes in the province.

However, Magadzi’s spokesperson, Phuti Seloba, said the MEC would not be intimidated by Sadtu. “Our matrics achieved 70% last year but we have potential to do more. Where there is no productivity, there should be accountability. The MEC told them about commitment. She told them that they needed to ensure that teachers were in class teaching.”

Seloba said there was nothing wrong with the MEC demanding turnaround strategies. The MEC, he said, would also meet with school governing bodies to preach the same message.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.