~ Teacher shortage, burnout predominant ~
PHILIPSBURG–A shortage of teachers at many schools, burnt-out teachers moulding the country’s future and unqualified teachers in classrooms formed part of the grim picture Education Minister Wycliffe Smith painted of the education system during an urgent plenary session of Parliament on the state of affairs at schools post-Hurricane Irma on Friday.
Smith said teacher burnout was the major risk that existed, while challenges included classroom shortages, reconstruction and repair cost, and adequate parking at temporary housing. He gave a snapshot of the situation at each school.
At Oranje School, two teacher assistants and one Dutch teacher are needed; existing teachers are burnt out and the school’s physical infrastructure cannot sustain (additional) hurricane damage.
Marie Genevieve de Weever School is in need of two teacher assistants, teachers are also burnt out and the school’s physical infrastructure cannot sustain hurricane damage. A Dutch teacher assistant is needed at the Dutch section of the school, teacher burnout is being experienced and the school’s physical infrastructure cannot sustain hurricane damage.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr School is in need of two teacher assistants, teacher burnout is being experienced and the school cannot sustain hurricane damage.
Ruby Labega School is in need of one Dutch teacher, teacher burnout is prevalent and the school’s infrastructure cannot sustain hurricane damage.
St Maarten Vocational Training School (SMVTS) is in need of two technical assistants for home economics and information technology, one English language teacher, one plumbing teacher and one computer repair teacher. Teacher burnout is also being experienced at SMVTS and the school’s infrastructure cannot sustain another hurricane.
Teacher burnout is also being experienced at Charles Leopold Bell School, which also cannot sustain another hurricane.
Construction of eight additional classrooms is in progress at Prins Willem-Alexander School (PWAS) for Special Education.
Milton Peters College (MPC) is in need of seven teachers for the areas of music, Dutch, science, instruction and geography. Teacher burnout is being experienced and there has been an increase in sick leave at the institution.
Repairs to Sundial School’s hospitality wing, which was damaged during Hurricane Irma, was expected to be finalised on Friday.
The Preparatory Secondary Vocational Education (PSVE) section of St. Maarten Academy faces classroom shortages. The school is sharing its campus with Academy’s academic section and is in need of a French teacher and an integrated science teacher. As two schools are using the premises, additional parking spaces are needed. Teacher burnout is also being experienced.
Repairs are being conducted at Academy’s Academic section and a new wing is being constructed to accommodate the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) programme, which is expected to be ready by December. Funding is needed to continue construction. Teacher burnout is being experienced.
Methodist Agogic Centre-Comprehensive Secondary Education (MAC-CSE) needs to replace its fencing. Additional rooms are being built at the school, which is also experiencing teacher shortage as English, visual arts, and two physical education teachers are needed. Funds are needed to continue making the school “hurricane ready.”
Charlotte Brookson Academy (CBA) for the Performance Arts needs a science lab so that its students can prepare for their Caribbean Certificate of Secondary Level Competence (CCSLC) exams. The school also needs a Spanish teacher and funding.
National Institute for Professional Advancement (NIPA) is in need of additional parking spaces and teachers are needed to give maritime and electrician lessons. The institution’s damaged network infrastructure poses a challenge. The institution uses part-time teachers and teacher burnout is being experienced.
St. Dominic High School faces classroom shortages. The school’s fencing needs to be replaced. There is no teacher shortage at this school, but funds are needed.
Sister Borgia School is fully operational. The covered play area needs to be repaired and the school needs teacher exemptions, as some unqualified teachers are at the institution and dispensation is needed. Teacher burnout is being experienced.
Sister Regina Primary School has 11 unqualified teachers and is experiencing teacher burnout. The Daily Herald understands that the school is contesting the information the minister provided about its teachers being unqualified. The school says all of its teachers are qualified.
Sister Magda School needs exemptions for seven teachers. Burnout is also being experienced at this school
St. Joseph School needs repairs to its roof.
Sister Marie Laurence School is being housed at St. Dominic Primary School and at Sister Magda School, and needs exemptions for some of its teachers to be able to teach. The school, which was destroyed by Hurricane Irma, is busy with its reconstruction project, which was submitted to the Education Ministry.
St. Dominic Primary School faces classroom shortages. There is currently no staff room and seven teacher exemptions are needed. Teacher burnout is being experienced.
The Seventh-Day Adventist School needs a Dutch teacher and faces classroom shortages.
Hillside Christian Schools Asha Stevens Campus has no shortage of teachers, but is in need of funds. The Helmich Snijders Campus is fully operational, but its rolling system needs to be replaced.
The two campuses of the Methodist Agogic Centre (MAC) have no teacher shortages, bur both are in need of funds. The MAC early stimulation is fully operational.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/80651-smith-paints-grim-picture-on-state-of-country-s-schools