By Jamal Saidi
By Jamal Saidi
Morocco World News
Casablanca, December 21, 2012
Teacher trainees at a number of Regional Centers of Education and Training are on strike in a protest over not being paid their due wages. They said that they will continue their boycott of training and studies until their demands are met. The allocation of salaries in some centers has caused more anger among the trainees in the rest of the centers.
In Ouarzazate, the teachers stopped attending classes and training sessions last week in a sign of discontent towards the delay in receiving their salaries. On Wednesday, Attajdid newspaper’s sources said that teachers are still boycotting the training, while Mohammed Keziri, the regional delegate of ministry of Education confirmed that they joined the center after being promised to receive their pay on Wednesday.
The center of Oujda has seen teachers with the same demands. Teacher trainees in the center of Oujda (540 Km east of Rabat) announced that they would boycott their training until the payments are allocated. They demanded to receive their grants immediately and that their salaries be paid on a monthly basis.
On Tuesday, the teachers organized a march towards the Regional Academy of Education and Training whose director received a representative of the committee in a bid to find a solution to the crisis. The dialogue, however, did not bring any solution. The director offered to pay for one month and 20 days and asked teachers to wait for 15 days before they can receive the rest of the payment. The committee rejected the offer as the teacher trainees can no longer wait to be paid.
It is worth noting that the Moroccan Training Centers of teachers underwent some changes this year, especially in terms of the monthly allowances devoted to the trainees. In comparison with last year, the monthly grant rose from 550 dhs ($65) to 2450 dhs ($300) per month. The other significant alterations consist in the fact that the practical aspect of the training is given paramount importance.
The current confrontation between the trainees and the centers is mainly due to two factors. The first is the delay of payments–the teachers were expecting to be paid on a monthly basis. Once they started their year-long training period, they learned that they were to be paid every three months. Many of them needed to obtain loans from their relatives and friends in order to cope with their costs of living.
“So far, I have borrowed more than what I expect to get paid,” a teacher trainee from Meknes told Morocco World News.
The other factor is related to the release of the grants for the trainees in some centers, while others are still waiting. This fact made a great number of the trainees feel they are unjustly treated, amidst the pressure of daily expenses. Although they have other demands the delay in releasing the grants is considered by most teachers as the most important factor owing to the difficulties they face to meet their daily expenses.
Edited by Laura Cooper