Dept violated agreement on assessments - teacher unions

2015-09-21 18:59
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Johannesburg – Government’s announcement that the Annual National Assessments (ANAs) would take place in December violated an agreement to develop a new "diagnostic tool” to replace them, teacher unions said on Monday.

The unions said in a statement that on September 11, they and the basic education department had announced that together they would develop a "remodelled" and "systemic" tool to replace the ANAs in their current form. 

The statement was issued by the SA Democratic Teachers Union  (Sadtu), the National Professional Teachers' Organisation of South Africa (Naptosa), the Suid Afrikaanse Onderwysunie (SAOU) and the Professional Educators Union (PEU).

The groups said the department and council of education ministers' announcement that the ANAs be written in December was "confrontational" and discouraged "labour peace".

The unions distanced themselves from the department’s announcement on September 11 that the ANAs would be postponed to February 2016. They said the parties had never agreed to set a date.

The department’s subsequent announcement that the ANAs would be written from December 1 to 4 was a "gross misrepresentation". It would be practically impossible to administer a remodelled test by early December, the unions said.

The ANAs were not in pupils' interests and did not promote quality education. Not writing them would not disadvantage children as they did not determine whether pupils progressed to the next grade, they said.

City Press reported on Sunday that senior basic education department officials decided on Thursday that the ANAs would be written in December, despite opposition from unions.

"We agreed that Sadtu should not be allowed to disrupt the system any longer," it quoted an unnamed provincial department head who attended the meeting as saying.

Read more on:    education department  |  saou  |  sadtu  |  naptosa  |  education

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