Education Ministry Announces Registration Deadline for Teachers

The Ministry of Education and Youth has announced that August 2009 is the deadline for teachers to register with the Teachers’ Service Commission.
In this regard, teachers are being encouraged to register, in order to access the benefits which will accrue from the exercise.
Speaking at a JIS ‘Think Tank’ on April 25, Chairman of the Teachers’ Service Commission, Bishop Howard Gregory, said that teachers should ensure that they are registered within the stipulated time frame, as only those registered would be able to access key benefits.
“There are several benefits. First of all, one has to be registered to be eligible for employment in public educational institutions, in order to be eligible for permanent appointment, promotional opportunities, access to study leave, access to motor vehicle loans and eligibility for pension,” he said. He noted that the registration process was simply not a policy direction being taken by the Ministry, but is a requirement of the Education Amendment Act of 1980, which stipulates that, “a person shall not teach or be employed as a teacher in a public education institution unless he or she is registered as a trained teacher, pre-trained teacher or an authorized teacher.”
“Registration is not merely another administrative exercise, as it is intended to ensure that all teachers are registered based on the prescribed criteria, in order to ensure that they meet the required standards,” he added.
Bishop Gregory pointed out that already, 10,500 teachers have registered with the Commission; however, there is need for the remaining number to submit their applications. More than 20,000 teachers are currently working in the Public Sector, which include infant, primary, secondary and college level teachers.
“The registration of teachers has been going on since (1980), but a significant number of teachers are not registered. We have been concerned as a Commission about this, and we have made several recommendations in terms of the process and how we abide by the law in terms of the requirements for persons to be registered,” he said.
“We [the Commission] are embarking on a new programme to get the teachers on stream, because all teachers will have to be registered,” Bishop Gregory emphasised.
Registration, he explained, was critical, as it was a precursor to the teacher licensing programme which will be implemented by the Education Transformation Team in the near future, in keeping with the 2015 deadline for the complete transformation of the education system. “The Education Transformation Team has been considering things related to registration and the licensing of teachers. and in fact, the registration process is a precursor to the licensing process that will come later,” he stated.
Noting the concerns of teachers who felt that they might be ‘booted’ from the system, Mr. Gregory assured them that once they met the criteria for registration, there was no need to fear. He noted that the process was geared at ensuring that all public sector teachers met the requirements, and urged those who have not yet obtained the required training, to do so.
As for pre-trained teachers, in particular, he said they have a total of six years to stay in the profession, during which time they must either upgrade their skills, or exit the system after the stipulated time.
In order to be registered, a teacher must submit an application form which may be obtained from the Teachers’ Service Commission, located at the head office of the Ministry of Education, Heroes Circle, or any of its six regional offices.
The applicant will be required to submit certified copies of his or her educational qualification, a birth certificate, a medical certificate, two recent character references and copies of their Tax Registration (TRN) Number and National Insurance Scheme (NIS) cards.
The Teachers’ Service Commission has responsibility for more than 1,000 public sector educational institutions. Its functions include reviewing the qualifications of persons entering the teaching profession, appointing principals and vice principals, and managing the registration of teachers.

JIS Social