In response to the recent service delivery protests and the burning of schools in Vuwani, NAPTOSA, with other stakeholders, were invited by the SAHRC to make a verbal and written submission on the impact of protest actions on the right to basic education. Mr David Millar (Deputy President) and Mr Basil Manuel (Executive Director) appeared before the “Hearing Panel of the Commission” on 13 June 2016 to present NAPTOSA’s response to the SAHRC brief.
Here are some of the salient inputs made by NAPTOSA :
•The right to education cannot be viewed in isolation – there are other competing Constitutional rights like the right to protest (sec 17) and the right to strike (sec 23).
•The manner in which the rights are exercised is crucial – if exercised with responsibility, and as intended, they should not affect the others negatively.
•The distortion of constitutional rights in the South African society must be addressed. People are quick to quote their constitutional rights without adhering to what the right actually determines.
The Department of Basic Education (DBE) released the above report by the MTT on the investigation of allegations into the selling of posts of educators by some members of teachers unions and departmental officials in the various provincial education departments. NAPTOSA engaged with the report and submitted its views on the report. The following captures the essence of the NAPTOSA submission.
At the outset NAPTOSA condemns all forms of corruption associated with appointments and promotions. NAPTOSA recorded its acknowledgement of the MTT for the effort put into investigating the vexing problem of posts for sale, inappropriate appointments and corruption within the Department of Basic Education (DBE)/Provincial Education Departments (PEDs) as a result of undue influence on processes by parties. NAPTOSA indicated its disappointment at the outcome of the MTT investigation, as NAPTOSA members have felt the brunt of these corrupt appointment processes. NAPTOSA is perturbed that the report takes a very negative view of unionism and unions to the point where it appears that a fair amount of union criticism has crept in, instead of clinical investigation and analysis of facts.
The TEACHER APPRECIATION SUPPORT PROGRAMME (TASP) is a stakeholder-driven project in which NAPTOSA, together with other Unions, the DBE, SACE, ELRC and Governing Body Associations raise awareness and educate the public on the important role teachers have in the development of the nation. In light of this the “JUNE 16 COMMEMORATION BY YOUNG TEACHERS” competition/project was designed to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of 16 June Youth Day.
NAPTOSA has noted with concern the continued wanton destruction of valuable education assets in Limpopo
NAPTOSA condemns the razing of schools in Vuwani, Limpopo in the strongest possible terms. Speaking in Pretoria on Friday, 6 May 2016, the President of NAPTOSA, Dr Anthea Cereseto, stated that “Destroying the means to education and hope for a better future for a significant number of children is one of the most abhorrent acts possible. It is deeply disturbing that such despicable behaviour is possible in this day and age”.
“Violence and destruction are not solutions to problems – no matter how legitimate the cause”, said Dr Cereseto. NAPTOSA is deeply concerned about the impact on the education of the children and the wellbeing of the teachers in the affected schools. These malicious acts have resulted in the waste of state resources and great costs will be incurred to replace these schools over several years.
NAPTOSA rejects commercialisation of education in South Africa
International Workers’ day, also known as Labour Day, is commemorated by workers and trade unions around the world, in celebration of workers' rights.
In protecting the rights of its members NAPTOSA has been closely watching the commercialisation of education in South Africa, under the guise of “low fee paying schools”, systemic testing and “microwaved lessons” aimed at improving the “gaps” prevalent in education. These factors are undermining effective teaching and learning in the public sector.
NAPTOSA foresees that continued commercialisation of education in South Africa will ultimately undermine the professional integrity of teachers and negatively affect collective bargaining power in the public sector.