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‘No Need to Belong to Certain Faith to Head School’

Head teachers should be passionate about the work they do. They do not have to belong to the faith of the school operators to assist the school in progressing. This
24 Jan 2019 10:08
‘No Need to Belong to Certain Faith to Head School’
Retired head teacher Joseva Madraitabua at Davuilevu Methodist Primary School in Nakasi. Photo: Ashna Kumar

Head teachers should be passionate about the work they do. They do not have to belong to the faith of the school operators to assist the school in progressing.

This is the view of Joseva Madraitabua, who is a retired head teacher.

While speaking to the Fiji Sun, Mr Madraitabua shared his teaching experience, which stood at more than 30 years. He is currently the school manager for Davuilevu Methodist Primary School in Davuilevu, Nakasi.

He started his teaching career at Namara District School in 1981 and was promoted to head teacher when he was posted to Vunimono Arya Primary School.

Mr Madraitabua was responding to the letter by Archbishop Peter Loy Chong to Minister of Education Rosy Akbar, dated January 11, in which he requested that faith be an element of the Open Merit Recruitment Selection System (OMRSS) for school heads.

Archbishop Loy Chong said in the letter that, “The faith-based school representatives believe that having a school head that belongs to our faith will enhance the school”.

Mr Madraitabua said to help the school to progress and achieve results, the head of the school does not need to be of the same faith as those who operate the school.

“I was appointed as the first Christian head teacher for an Arya Samaj School,” he said.

“The most important thing for head teachers is to understand while going to a school which is different from our religion is that we have to uphold everything they respect in their school.

“I was given the post because my upbringing was in a multiracial community and I respected all religions. The academic performance depends on the head teacher. Most of the faith-based schools are run by their organisations and when a head teachers joins the school, he or she should focus on getting the academic results rather,” Mr Madraitabua said.

He said when he was posted to Vunimono Arya Primary School, his focus was on improving the academic results of the school.

“While I was at Vunimono Arya Primary School, I did not face any challenges being a Christian head teacher of a Hindu faith-based school because I went there and did what I was supposed to do,” Mr Madraitabua said.

“The only thing I wanted to do was to improve the academic results of the school and I fulfilled my duty.

During the time I was posted as head teacher there, the academic results increased significantly and that was what I was focused on.

“The most important thing is you have to do the job that is required of you. When I went as the head teacher of Vunimono Arya Primary School, it was one of the underperforming schools at that time.

“I took the head teacher’s role at the school and worked with the teachers to improve the academic exam results. We were able to show the improvement in the first year.”

Mr Madraitabua said head teachers should be passionate about the work they do.

“You have to have the right mind- set and help the children and the school overall to achieve progressive results,” he said.

Edited by Epineri Vula

Feedback: ashna.kumar@fijisun.com.fj



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