The Ministry of Education, Heritage and Arts is pleased to announce that 99.4 percent of its teachers are fully vaccinated.
In October, the Ministry terminated 130 teachers who did not receive their first jab by August 15 which was the condition under the “No Jab No Job” Policy.
Eleven teachers are yet to receive their second jab, 1 teacher has been granted exemption by the Permanent Secretary for Health and 13 teachers are awaiting confirmation on exemption from Ministry of Health and Medical Services.
Those teachers who have been terminated had written to the Ministry expressing their decision not to get vaccinated. These teachers have been replaced by the Ministry.
The Minister for Education, Heritage and Arts, Premila Kumar said “It is indeed pleasing to see that from a large number of teachers, most have been fully vaccinated. It gives us reassurance that we will have fully vaccinated teachers in classrooms when schools start. We are also recruiting to ensure all schools are fully staffed.”
Whilst the Ministry has adopted various required steps to create a safe school environment, having vaccinated teachers in classrooms is our biggest advantage and the Minister has expressed her appreciation and thanks teachers for getting vaccinated.
“Not only this, teachers have also played a pivotal role in encouraging and motivating the eligible students to get vaccinated and the result is quite pleasing” Hon Kumar stated.
The Ministry is currently recruiting teachers for Early Childhood Education (ECE), Special and Inclusive, Primary and Secondary schools. The advertisement is open so qualified teachers with valid teacher registration certificates can still apply.
While numerous applications are being received from qualified secondary teachers, the number of applications received from qualified primary and ECE teachers remain low.
The Minister is encouraging students who will be progressing for tertiary studies to consider taking up studies in Special and Inclusive Education, ECE and Primary Education as the Ministry needs to employ qualified teachers in these crucial areas.
The Ministry is calling upon teachers, parents and guardians to spend time with children to guide them in the right pathway when it comes to teaching career so that they choose the area where they become marketable after graduation.
Whilst applauding teachers and students for getting vaccinated, the Ministry is urging them not to let their guards down and to continue practicing COVID safety protocols, and encourages all eligible Fijians to get vaccinated. Vaccination is the best way forward.