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School back in: Friday ‘relegated to past’

Public school teachers at a general membership meeting at the Heritage Worship Centre, on Dundonald Street, on Friday (File photograph by Akil Simmons)

Teachers will return to schools today after industrial action on Friday.

The Ministry of Education said yesterday that all public schools would be open and ready to receive students today.

Diallo Rabain, the Minister of Education, said: “I want our parents to be assured that the Government is committed to ensuring incidents like Friday’s are relegated to the past.

“Discussions with the Bermuda Union of Teachers also revolved around changing the nature of the relationship between the Ministry of Education and the BUT.

“Clearer lines of communication will be put in place, allowing more access to myself and the entire body of teachers.

“The disruption of our children’s education is unfortunate under any circumstance, and we must do what is necessary to prevent this from happening again.

“I am happy we could discuss these outstanding issues and look forward to a renewed and reformed relationship with the BUT, as was discussed in our meetings on Friday.”

The Bermuda Union of Teachers said yesterday that the decision was made for its membership to return to classes after their meeting with David Burt, the Premier, two days ago.

Shannon James, the president of the BUT, said: “As a result of the discussions led by the Premier on Friday evening, we are asking teachers to report to school as per normal on Monday.”

A Ministry of Education spokeswoman said discussions with the BUT on Friday regarding the issues that led to teachers not reporting to class on Friday, was positive and fruitful.

She added: “Over the next few weeks, attention will be brought to several issues that have been outstanding for many years, as well as plans put in place on how to address other items before the start of the 2019-20 school year.”

Teachers did not turn up for school on Friday after the BUT called an emergency meeting at 8.30am to discuss a range of issues including support staff and mould. Parents were asked to pick up their children at noon.