Between socio-political crisis and teacher strikes, the school year is paying the price, notes the “Zanmi Timoun” Foundation
On June 20, 2022, the Ministry of National Education and Professional Training (MENFP) published the school calendar for the 2022-2023 academic year. In this official calendar, 191 school days were planned by the ministerial authorities and the start of the school year was set for Monday September 5, 2022. Between insecurity, scarcity of fuel and various socio-political crises affecting the country, the “Zanmi Timoun” Foundation » notes that the 2022-2023 school year is significantly cut.
The “Zanmi Timoun” Foundation recalls that the start of the school year, which was planned for September 2022, could not take place due to the protest movements launched across the country to denounce the government’s decision to increase prices. petroleum products. The reopening was done “tipa tipa” or gradually from November 2022 as the Minister of National Education announced. As a result of these events, the calendar had to be updated. To this end, on December 16, 2022, the MENFP had published a new calendar which provided for 142 school days from January to August 2023. However, the unrest that occurred following the assassination of around 14 police officers in January 2023, caused paralysis school activities in various regions of the country. In addition, on Monday March 6, 2023, several private schools in downtown Port-au-Prince had to close their doors due to insecurity and acts of crime. It should be noted that several other private and public schools in various other municipalities in the metropolitan area of Port-au-Prince had already closed their doors due to the armed gangs that are rampant in the localities where they are located.
In addition, the public sector teachers’ strike which began in April is still going on. This prolonged strike situation is hampering the academic activities of several high schools and national schools as state exam deadlines are rapidly advancing. In several cities across the country, high school students have organized various protest movements with the aim of forcing the MENFP authorities to respond to the teachers’ demands. However, no concrete response seems to be provided to the demands of the protesters, despite certain promises from the Minister of National Education, Mr. Nesmy MANIGAT. In addition to armed violence, socio-political unrest must be taken into account which also has a negative impact on the learning capacity of students, mostly young adolescents. Indeed, these events can cause anxiety, post-traumatic stress syndrome and others that can affect learners’ training in the long term.
Based on these findings, the “Zanmi Timoun” Foundation, an organization promoting and defending children’s rights, urges the State to put everything in place to guarantee the right to education and to refrain from any action infringing this right. In addition, the “Zanmi Timoun” Foundation also recommends to the Government of the Republic, particularly the Ministry of National Education and Professional Training, to take the necessary measures to satisfy the demands of the striking teachers. And, to allow all children and young people in Haiti to have access to quality education, the one and only path that can lead to the social and economic development of the country.
Done in Port-au-Prince, June 9, 2023
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