After the Court’s dismissal of the warrant of prohibitory injunction filed by the Ministry of Education, the Union of Professional Educators (UPE) has issued several individual directives to transfer teachers and LSEs who suffered the injustice of late transfers because of the negligence and the last-minute action and stance of the Ministry and the MUT.
While honoring our obligations as a union towards our members, we have made sure that the educators who have received our support and protection have a genuine case. It is our intention to minimise the disruption to the educational system.
In a further development, the Ministry and the UPE have met to discuss individual cases, but agreement has yet to be reached. Consequently, the UPE has had to leave its directives in place and intends to issue further directives to safeguard its members at their place of work. There is a strong suspicion that the Ministry has entered these negotiations with the UPE in bad faith after not accepting any of the points put forward by the Union. The Ministry must thus be held responsible for the large number of students who will be without teachers in the coming days.
It is disturbing that the Ministry has not acceded to any of our demands which we know are attainable and realistic. We are not going to allow the Ministry to besmirch our reputation, to point the finger of blame at the UPE, or to project its failings on us.
The general public should be made aware of the Ministry’s lack of goodwill in its dealings with the UPE. Our sincere desire is for the government and Ministry to engage with the UPE and put into practice European industrial values for the sake of our students. The element of trust built up over the years between the UPE and the Ministry cannot be taken for granted and is, in fact, being severely tested presently.
Trust is gained by proactive and tangible evidence. The events of the past few weeks and days, we believe, speak for themselves – our moral compass always directs us to find the best solutions for our educators and students.