Dear Public School Teacher,
Yuletide greetings. It is my fervent prayer that you would see the seriousness in this important but unsolicited piece. Your future assignments and other charitable ventures done voluntarily might depend on it. It is lengthy but just come along with me.
I believe strongly that you have been following keenly the tussle between GES and one of its maverick employees, Mr. Michael Owusu Afriyie known in showbiz circles as Teacher Kwadwo. The matters arising are quite revealing but not surprising.
Few things however got tacitly highlighted in the statement released by the embattled teacher. This was in response to the earlier press release announcing his sack from active service by the employer. It is my intention to share one or two with you.
In this our humanitarian work called profession, our employer, GES does not want you to become a ‘Celebrity Tsitsa’ in the classroom. Yes! It is an institution that always wants to be in the limelight receiving the applause. Even if you engage in any philanthropic work to help your pupils/students, it would not save you when caught at the wrong side of the Code of Conduct. GES would nail you to the cross without any aota of compassion. You would surely be on your own when trouble pays an unannounced visit. Imbibe this.
Also, take a personal interest in some school records and live to enjoy the ‘little coins’ from your sweat. Your peace of mind would thrive on it too. Sign the attendance book everyday and let it be reflective of your presence at work. I think, this should be non-negotiable.
Eheh! You see the way you go about asking permission verbally, I think it is about time you stopped. Permissions and agreements should be properly documented for future reference. Do this and have your peace. There should be nothing like a gentleman agreement by word of mouth anymore. By now, you should know what vacation of post and absenteeism mean to your employer.
I also think that, it is about time you read the GES Code of Conduct very well and be abreast with issues. A time soon cometh when that document would save your blushes.
Finally, in case of any “yawa” as used in Ghanaian local idiosyncrasy, do not expect your colleague staff members and other teachers around to solidarize with you. Forget it because it would not happen. It is not in the DNA of teachers to be there for their own. The Ghanaian teacher by nature is always timid and likes playing it safe. Sometimes, they are the enemy within.
I hear the presence of the controversial TM1 laptop computer would bring to an end the manual preparation of lesson notes. Well, hopefully, it is the case. But until then, keep doing the ‘old normal’ if you can.
Now, before I go back to enjoy my Xmas holiday and with E-levy looking like a sure bet in January, know this. The GES as a body clothed with the responsibility of supervising education issues in the country has always seen teachers who question the status quo as rebellious. We have all been privy to situations where teachers demand accountability and the rest is history.
Look, the institution would definitely react, so, just make sure you are clean when you intend going at them. Queries and disciplinary committee hearings would come your way. Make sure you are battle ready. How do I know all these? My simple response would be, “Events always cast their shadows”.
I know there would be lingering questions on the role/roles the unions are playing in all of these. Your sentiments are rhetorical in nature anyway. They would not show forth.
Hopefully, you are able to identify “your number” in the scheme of things and do the simple things in the classroom. Do that and grant yourself an eternal peace of mind. After all, your Chief Motivator has advised you to look elsewhere if you want to become a billionaire. In essence, if the kitchen is too hot for you, just get out.
Please, like I said from the outset, this opinion is unsolicited.
Thank you so much for coming along. Enjoy the Season’s special moments and may the coming year be fruitful.
Nutefe Worla ✍️