18 Jan 2013

Solomon school holidays extended amid pay dispute

5:06 pm on 18 January 2013

The Solomon Islands Ministry of Education has agreed to extend school holidays by a week, so it can form a budget to pay teachers their appropriate salaries.

Last year, the Ministry failed to realign all teachers' salaries to ensure they were paid according to their experience.

Only the salaries of new teachers had been re-levelled.

The General Secretary of The National Teachers Association, Johnley Hatimoana, says extending the holidays gives the government time to find the funds for back-pay and to create a supplementary budget for teachers' salaries for this year.

"Through a resolution we demand the government to have more than 30 million dollars to be back-dated to 9th of February 2012. And that is covering 2012 and the whole of 2013. You know very well that the budget for this year has been passed without inserting that part of the re-levelling for teachers this year."

Johnley Hatimoana says SINTA may stage a strike if the government continues to fail its pledge to realign teachers' salaries.