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Agago Head Teachers Protest Mandatory UGX 100,000 Training Fee

The three-day training that was supposed to commence on Wednesday was organized by the district education to orient headteachers of all government-aided primary and secondary schools ahead of the school reopening slated for January next year.

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Headteachers in Agago District are protesting a 100,000 Shillings charge they are supposed to pay to attend a training by the education department.

The three-day training that was supposed to commence on Wednesday was organized by the district education to orient headteachers of all government-aided primary and secondary schools ahead of the school reopening slated for January next year.

However, according to the invitation letters each school head was required to attend the training and also make a contribution of 100,000 Shillings towards facilitating the trainees.

One of the headteachers who spoke to Uganda Radio Network on condition of anonymity says they are being compelled to make the contribution from their personal savings.

According to the source, no actual financial pool has been reserved for the activity since they are under an obligation not to withdraw any funds from the school capitation grants accounts until schools are officially opened next year. 

She says that on top of the 100,000 shillings, they were also supposed to cater for their transport allowance, meals, and accommodation among others.

Another headteacher also alleges that the act is not only illegal but also a corrupt tendency since the facilitators of the training are civil servants who are paid on a monthly basis and are soliciting money in an irregular way.    According to the source, Agago has 111 government-aided primary schools and 11 which translates that the trainers would have collected 12.2 Million Shillings from the unsuspecting headteachers.  

The source says most teachers are facing hardships due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the festive season which has affected their earnings.

However, the District Education Officer Esther Aryemo says that she is not aware. She says that the move could have been initiated by a section of insubordinate staff without her approval.   According to Aryemo, its true Centre Coordinating Tutors and inspectors of schools were inducted by officials from the Education and Sports ministry on preparations of the school opening which they would later impart to the school heads. 

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 The District Secretary for Education Anna Apio equally says they were not aware why the headteachers were being forced to make contributions. She adds that they resolved to call off the training while their grievances are being resolved.

Apio says that the allegations will be investigated and those found guilty will face punitive measures. 

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The training is part of an initiative by the Ministry of Education and Sports that has embarked on a countrywide orientation of education department and institutional administrators as a precursor to prepare some teachers ahead of the reopening of the schools.

Some of the disciplines earmarked for the training include, understanding COVID-19, teacher wellbeing, curriculum implementation, and managing lost learning, implementing hybrid learning strategies, building a supportive learning environment, and the role of teachers as pedagogical leaders in the context of the new normal.

 The District Education Officer, Inspectors of Schools, and all Center Coordinating Tutors were last week trained by officials of the Ministry of Education and Sports and they were expected to induct headteachers who would subsequently replicate the lessons learned to their respective teachers.