Teachers in the Mozambican National Education System are threatening not to work with classes of over 100 pupils in the same room, since overcrowding has been harming the quality of education.
The teachers’ intention was announced during a march held in Maputo, days before the start of the 2024 school year.
The teachers are demanding the end of classes in the open, payment of overtime allowances, as well as a reduction in the number of pupils in above-average sized classes.
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One teacher said If we have classes with over 100 pupils this school year, we will make a point of splitting the list and the government will decide what to do with the other part.
The payment of the overtime allowance is also one of the main demands, since only teachers from three schools have benefited from it, following a promise made by the Education Ministry.
The teachers are also talking about the adoption of a series of measures to improve the quality of teaching in the country, which includes increasing levels of educational achievement.
According to Abel das Neves, representing the NGO, the Education for All Movement, the Ministry of Education’s position on the existence of undue overtime payments is dubious.
Das Neves said if the hours presented by teachers are not correct, the Ministry should present the right ones. You can’t say that something is wrong without presenting what is right.
Das Neves added that it is dangerous for the 2024 school year to begin with dissatisfaction on the part of the teachers and if the teachers carry out their threats, the effects will be devastating for the pupils.
There should be clearer communication. The teachers have already submitted several demands, there have been meetings with the Education Ministry and the promises made are not being kept, he said.