JAMES APA GUMUNO
THE National Government and Department of Education needs to increase the pay of double-certified teachers now teaching in the technical and vocational schools or lose these experienced teachers to the mining industry.
John Melson, a representative of Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET) of PNG Teachers’ Association, Western Highlands branch, said many experienced teachers in TVET had left to take up jobs in the mining industries.
Mr Melson said in order to stop other teachers from leaving the Department of Education, the Teaching Service Commission (TSC) needed to come up with a new pay scale for double certificated teachers and increase their pay.
He said double-certified teachers were teachers who have teaching certificates or diplomas, and at the same time, have tradesmen certificates in specialised trades like metal fabricating, welding, electrical, heavy equipment fitting, and mechanics.
He said many of these teachers had attended further training and received diplomas in TVET education, but yet, they were paid on, E01 and E02 base salaries of K330.00 and K520.00 respectively.
Mr Melson said this did not matched the kind of qualifications they had, and that was why many had gone to look for greener pastures.
He said because the mining boom in the country was offering good pay, many more TVET teachers were likely to leave teaching and this would put a strain on TVET.
Mr Melson said TVET played a vital role in the development of the country, training the young work force to go out in the field and work.
He said if there were no teachers, the education of young people dropping out of Grade 10, 12 or even in tertiary institutions, would be badly affected.