Gov't offers teachers improved fringe benefits

RJR News has obtained information on the government's improved fringe benefits offer to Jamaica's teachers following a meeting between the Jamaica Teachers' Association (JTA) and the government on Tuesday.
Under the proposed offer, the National Housing Trust (NHT) will make 10 per cent of its housing developments available to teachers.
Teachers who are NHT beneficiaries will be qualified for another benefit from the Trust in five years instead of the current 15 years.
The interest rate for teachers who are NHT beneficiaries will be reduced by one percentage point and they will not be required to pay the closing costs for National Housing Trust houses.
Additionally, crown lands will be developed for teachers and the government has also promised to increase health benefits. 
The communique also noted that Guidance Counsellors are now eligible for senior teacher positions.
Tertiary grants will be resumed to teachers' children.
The document also stated that permission will be granted for principals to ask students to pay $300 for each subject with School Based Assessment (SBA).
The money will be given to teachers who mark them.
As it relates to pension reform, once negotiations are completed-  teachers will contribute one percent over five years instead of  2.5 per cent over two years.
The government has promised to speak about basic salary by Friday after it discusses the matter at the Cabinet retreat which start today.
When RJR News contacted JTA President Georgia Waugh Richards, she said the Association had not signed off on the latest fringe benefits offer from the government. 

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