Monday, February 18, 2013

All of the School Happenings!

The weeks are seriously flying by these days, I can't believe it's already the middle of February!

So while I was at home someone mentioned to me that I never really said what ended up happening with that pesky teacher strike. It did finish after a week of striking, and I think a few of the demands were met. Teachers received an 8% raise [not 40% as they demanded... but still a definite raise] which was backtracked from their April 2012 paychecks, then this year they are renegotiating salaries, and next year another raise is scheduled to occur. Unsure what else happened with regards to their other demands, everything was kind of up in the air and unknown, as usual.

Welcome to my classroom, which I actually decorated for 2013!
Over at DPS, things are in a bit of a state of flux. The principal that I started with/who applied for a PCV has now left the school, and is the principal of the newly opened secondary school – Luderitz has so many school-aged kids now that they needed two venues. Because of this, after a couple of years of planning, now Grade 8-10 is at the old secondary school, and Grade 11-12 is in town at what once used to be another primary school that had been empty for a couple of years to my best knowledge. Sooooo he’s gone and one of the HODs was assigned to be the acting principal, despite her numerous other commitments within the community. Hopefully we will have a new principal by Term 2. I think we’re still short on a teacher too, but I’m not asking questions. *Update [because I wrote this forever ago]: we have a newly chosen principal, but I think it's causing A LOT of drama because he used to work here years back as a teacher and people don't want him here/are writing letters to the regional office... more to come once he arrives beginning of Term 2, whew! 

The Green Monster Box, for tattles/venting
My Classroom!
And to add onto that, big changes were finally implemented this year, with the complete elimination of school fees. While in theory I think this is good, practically this is not going to end well for the schools. The fees at my school were 220 NAD per learner [1 NAD = 9 USD] so not the hugest of amounts, but it really adds up when every learner is paying them. Without the school fees, I’m very confused and concerned as to how our school is going to continue to function. The Ministry of Education is supposedly going to be compensating… but this promise doesn't make me less worried. When schools start running out of supplies then we’ll really see what happens. Anyway, a few months ago all the learners paid the school fees for 2013 when they re-registered, so that meant that for the first three days of school there was a massive line of parents outside the office, waiting to get their money back. Mayhem!
I got some Valentine's Day Cards this year!

In terms of actual classes, not too much going on to report. My kids are way better behaved this year, probably due to the fact that I have more of a handle on how to do things and have been a lot stricter from the start. We are just wrapping up athletics, so we will finally start to have full days of classes this week! All the other secondary projects are going somewhat smoothly so far - more on those later! To end for now, the note on my Valentine's Day card from the smartest learner in Grade 7 now: "Happy Valentine's Day. May the Lord bless you in this day. Enjoy the day Miss. Thank u miss for giving/teaching me english. I can now really write proper English like the Americans cause inside my heart I'm a black american." So cute!

1 comment:

  1. your classroom is so nice, claire! super impressed.