UPE issues further directives with authorities given a final ultimatum

UPE is threatening further industrial action unless their proposal for online learning is properly discussed

UPE is issuing additional directives with an ultimatum before further action is taken, after discussions with authorities fell through.

"The UPE regretfully has to say that, until now, the discussions held have not been fruitful," their statement reads. "The ministry blamed the health authorities, saying that it is ultimately their remit to take the decision, and likewise from their end, the health authorities brushed off all form of responsibility on the matter onto the ministry of education."

The union met with the Ministry of Education yesterday morning to discuss school closures and an immediate move towards online learning, but these discussions fell through.

"From the end of the ministry, all that was offered to the UPE was more vague responses rather than a show of true concern for the educational sector," UPE said.

"The union will wait until midnight today for the ultimatum to come to a close and then take action. We, at the UPE, have demonstrated our willingness to discuss further, and to find a way forward at this point in time."

Under the new directives, members of the UPE working in kindergarten are to stop giving lessons and report to the SMT if students are not wearing a mask or visor, with the exception of students with sensory issues and those below 3 years of age.

Members working within the primary sector are being told not to accept changes to their existing work schedule nor conduct any voluntary or extra work within school.

LSEs who are members of the UPE will not be accepting replacement lessons, only assisting students as per job description. Those currently working as relievers in Kindergarten classes with 12 or 14 learners are to remain in class as class LSEs.

All members are to refrain from submitting assessments in relation to the Learning Outcomes Framework.

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