You are here

Letters

Lateral transfer a cost cutting exercise

Sydney, Australia

Dear Sir,

It comes at no surprise that the government is now trying to stifle the promotion and transfer system of teachers who are qualified and based on established rules. What the Education Dept is attempting to do is to frustrate PSA efforts to return Tonga’s public service to pre-strike normality. Effectively, the government is now resorting to extra-ordinary bullying tactics by re-arranging the transfer/promotion system in a way that they hope will catch teachers out.

Lesser qualified teachers are now being exploited by the bureaucracy as a political tool to break down the PSA, and to create further conflicts between the teaching profession, by granting promotions to lesser qualified teachers ahead of those who are more qualified. What is the government’s rationale for choosing this particular strategy and why is it that they did not issue a statement to the media explaining their position?

We have only heard the PSA and teacher’s side of the issue and this is particularly unfair on the teachers themselve because of the various innuendoes being applied to them by a sometimes very unsympathetic public. A word of caution to teachers likely to be promoted ahead of those who are more qualified: you should not rejoice at such prospects because what is being carried out by the Education Dept, if successful, is an exercise to cut costs. In the long run, this will come back and hurt you, probably worst.

As far as I can remember, the agreement reached between the government and the PSA was a gentleman’s agreement. In case I misunderstood this latest conflict, perhaps readers of the forum could kindly enlighten us on this issue.

‘ofa atu

Jason Faletau

jfaletau [at] hotmail [dot] com