The Malta Union of Teachers (MUT) have confirmed that Maths and Maltese exams will be temporarily at the chopping block this scholastic year in secondary schools. And while our 13-year-old selves symbolically squeal with delight, the reality of this deprivation for school children has not gone down well with parents.
The MUT’s conditions come as a result of what they feel is a lack of meaningful response to their complaints about a shortage of teachers, specifically in those two subjects. The union has highlighted their workload as going beyond their agreed sectoral arrangement – calling attention to the problem over a year ago.
The Ministry of Education has responded with their own recent statement, declaring their agreement and implementation of 17 of the unions’ asks. The Ministry disputed the argument that teachers normally have to take on a 25-lesson load per week, and instead stated that 11 out of 176 (3.5%), and one in every four Maths teachers, teachers worked against that specific lesson-load.
And while the Ministry has highlighted the fact that the date of implementation the MUT’s directive in unclear, parents the island over are increasingly worried about the situation. So much so, the Maltese Association of Parents of Students in Government Schools has now called on the Prime Minister to resolve the dispute and guarantee that end-of-year exams do in fact take place. The association lamented the fact that Maltese students have been made to lose out from the situation at hand.
The Ministry of Education also stated that it had issued a call for teacher applications, and that a few candidates have indeed been employed to teach Maths and Maltese. Here’s hoping more will step up to the plate and that local school kids can get earnestly back to their tables and conjugations.