If you always feed me garbage and keep me in the dark, I begin to feel like a mushroom.
Welcome to the world of being an employee of the state. I am a well-qualified, professional person who, in the corporate world would be accorded the respect (and the salary) I deserve. I have a number of post-graduate qualifications and more than 25 years’ experience in my field. I also run the largest department at my place of employment, with acknowledged success, I might add.
Why is it then that the people who hold the purse strings never manage to get things right? I would like to cite some examples by way of explanation:
- Three years ago I was officially promoted into a post I had filled (unofficially) for the previous two years. This meant a nominal increase, for which I was most grateful. Six months later all educators (oh, I forgot to tell you that I am a teacher) were awarded something called an Occupation Specific Dispensation increase – related specifically to being educators. Things were looking up!
- Three months later I was informed that as I had only been in that promotion post for six months, I did not qualify for the increase, so they were going to be deducting the amount that I had been given, in monthly increments over the next two years.
- Then in September last year educators all over South Africa went out on strike for better wages, housing and medical benefits. The union to which I belong called for a show of solidarity, so I struck (if that is the right word) for one day, knowing that I would not be paid.
- In February this year we were told that, owing to an administrative issue they were not able to distinguish between those who had struck for one day, or those who had downed tools ( or is that chalk?) for longer. Thus, they would deduct four days’ pay from us all and at some stage ( not specified) in the future they would refund us what was owed.
- Add to this the fact that any salary advice reconciliation is only ever received three or four months after the relevant pay date and you have a recipe for disaster.
- Where in the corporate world does it happen that someone is given something and then has it taken away? Who would tolerate not knowing from month to month what they will earn – or having any way to find out?
I love my job. I love being in the classroom with teenagers who are alive and fresh and new every day. I love the fact that they teach me – often far more than I will ever teach them. I love the fact that relating to them on a daily basis keeps my mind open to the changes that are inevitable in life.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( 1 so far )