Another school year has flown by.
As with each new year, we approached 2019 with excitement and expectations that it would be a good year.
And in many respects it was. Medical subsidies and the housing allowance were improved, the cost-of-living adjustment was implemented; educators eventually reached parity with their public service counterparts when the 1,5% pay progression was effected on 1 July 2019; we have a new pension “clean break” calculation method; and long service awards were improved.
NAPTOSA experienced the excitement of new leadership elections and yet again successful Provincial Conferences and a National Congress. Our international footprint was greatly enhanced by our participation in the 8th Education International World Congress and the unanimous acceptance of a Resolution co-sponsored by NAPTOSA.
But in many respects it wasn’t. In education, the school year started with an infrastructure disaster and school violence has escalated to the point of a national crises. The General Education Certificate was introduced, but poorly handled by the DBE as was the whole Comprehensive Sexuality Education saga.
The economy keeps struggling and the majority of State Owned Enterprises, with ESKOM and SAA leading the pack, are pulling the country down. The level of corruption exposed by the Commissions of Enquiry boggles the mind and Gender Based Violence has reached new heights, even now during the 16 days of activism for No Violence against Woman and Children Campaign.
Amidst all this, members of NAPTOSA have kept the South African education system going, through hard work and professionalism. Do know, that you have greatly contributed to improving the lives of the learners in your care and that it is highly appreciated.
You deserve a well-earned rest. On behalf of the NAPTOSA leadership, I wish you a wonderful and peaceful holiday. May you come back refreshed in the new year and may 2020 fulfil all your expectations.
Best wishes also to the newly elected leaders. Let us make the new term of office a successful one where we see strong union growth.
Thank you to the staff of the union for your dedication and hard work throughout the year.
To all our Christian members, a blessed Christmas.