ON MARCH 16, the Association of Catholic Schools Teachers and Support Staff (ACTS) and the Catholic Education Secretariat (CES) yielded to the appeal and advice of several interveners to use dialogue as the best method in resolving the evolving crisis at Catholic Schools in Monrovia and its environs and to reopen the Catholic Schools yesterday, Wednesday, March 18, 2015.
FOLLOWING A DAY-LONG discussion which resulted into a seven-count Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), the ACTS issued a memo to its teachers calling-off its go-slow action with immediate effect against a bargaining that teachers will be given at least two-month of their cumulated salary.
THE CATHOLIC ARCHDIOCESAN Education Secretariat, Archdiocese of Monrovia along with some interveners met with the parties and reached a consensus to establish a more legal and moral basis on which the current go-slow action of the teachers could be resolved; for which anMoU was entered.
APPARENTLY, ONE OF the moral basis was that dialogue is the best method for ending conflicts while the legal bases were that the parties agreed that the CES will not dismiss or take revenge against any member of ACTS for their role in the advocacy protest and at the same time; the ACTS will withdraw all and any such action of complaint filed to the Ministry of Labor and other said institution against the CES.
THE RESOLUTION WITH the parties further explained that the CES pay the amount in one full installment, on yesterday March 17, and that the ACTS accepts the payment terms measured by the official immediate resumption of classes with all Ebola protocols out in place at the various schools.
WE THANK THE parties for being farsighted to understanding that dialogue is the best solution for any crisis because in conflicts there are neither losers nor winners; and in fact, at this stage of our country’s history, Ebola did not win after the 10 years of our staggering peace; we are sure no disagreement should; regardless of who perpetrates it and how it is perpetrated should derail our gains.
THE INTERVENERS WERE actually on time in helping to resolve the crisis which could have caused disturbances in the city of Monrovia and we are also grateful to our teachers for seeing reasons to reduce their demands from five months to two; for this we salute you, the ACTS.
AGAIN, WE SAY, it is always good to negotiate and we want to say hats off in appreciation to the Archdiocesan Catholic Education Council through the facilitation of the Ministry of Education, the Liberia Council of Churches, LINSU, Catholic Youths Association (CYA) including Atty. Koffi Woods, the Parents Teachers Association among others, for the reopening of our Catholic Schools.
WE HOPE THAT other school administrators will take cue from this intervention and proceed accordingly because there will be no school if there are no students to teach; so without building a future for our generation there will indeed be no generational change, if school administrators do not prioritize instructors.