Don’t Act Like A Saviour To Teachers-Penn On $300 Stipend
Education Minister Hon. Dr Natalio Sowande Wheatley is being called out over the recently $300 stipend announcement for teachers.
“I am sure the teachers are grateful, and members of the community are [grateful] but come on, don’t use this as some ploy that you scrape at the bottom of the barrel to find this money. Like you are the saviour for the teachers,” Hon. Marlon Penn, Opposition Leader said.
Speaking on the National Democratic Party (NDP) radio programme this week, he added, “when on the other hand we are taking millions of dollars- we had fishing and farming grants $2M jumped to $6.2M and counting, $4 additional million dollars and you are talking about scraping the bottom of the barrel.”
Hon. Penn said the government needs to manage the financial resources wisely because priority areas are not getting attention.
“We are finding all of these monies from all over the place and then talking about we scrape at the bottom of the barrel, these are the words you [Wheatley] are using, to give our teachers $300 a year?” he asked.
On August 31, Minister Wheatley told BVI Platinum News that teachers will be receiving $300.00 stipend each for this academic school year 2021/2022 with the possibility of it becoming an annual initiative.
Further, he said that teachers were also informed that they will soon be receiving their outstanding 2017 increments with plans already afoot to work out the payments for the other outstanding increments.
The education minister said the government is cognisant of the challenges being faced by teachers but noted that the feedback following the announcement of the stipend was a welcoming one.