Several students of many Catholic Schools in the city last week staged a peaceful protest over the prolonged go slow action that is affecting normal academic activities in those schools.
It can be recalled that the Association of Catholic School Teacher and Support Staff (ACTS) recently announced its “Go-Slow” action due to the Catholic Educational Secretariat (CES) refusal to pay them (teachers) five months salary arrears owed them. According to the document, on the 3rd of February 2015 ACTS held a mass meeting to have unanimously resolved to stage a Go-Slow action beginning Wednesday, March 4, 20015.
It stated that the decision by ACTS was predicated upon CES outright refusal to pay the five months salary arrears owed the teachers in spite of all peaceful approaches and interventions by some well meaning Liberians.
The association in its protest action document called on all teachers under the banner of ACTS based on the above mentioned situation to as of Wednesday, March 4, 2015 to report to their respective schools only to sign in their signing book and refrain from entering any class room for the purpose of teaching.
The association in its document to the teacher said, “Through the “Go-Slow” period, teachers are advised not to take instruction from any school administration or CEO’s administrators. Furthermore, any information relative to returning to normal academic function will be given only by the leadership of ACTS”.
As a result of the protest, there have not been normal academic activities in many of these Catholic schools, thus depriving the students of normal learning activities. The government ordered all schools reopened on February 16. Schools were closed down about five months ago owing to the Ebola crisis.
Even though some of the schools like the Don Bosco Polytechnic Schools said they are not a part, the teachers or association’s action is affecting many of the Catholic schools.
As a result of this go-slow action, students who have not had classes for almost a month, for the second time staged a peaceful protest over the resumption of normal academic activities. Some of them shouted: “We want to go to school; we want teachers.”
Although the students’ protest last Friday was not violent, it caused traffic jam in some parts of the city, especially the Bye-pass community.