BOSETU would like to congratulate its members, all teachers, and the general teaching profession on their day, the Botswana Teachers Day. There is no iota of doubt that teachers of this country have put immense and tireless efforts towards the development of the country, hence the need not only to thank them, but also to thunderously applaud them. In our view as BOSETU, there is no iota of doubt that, teaching remains one of the oldest professions that is not only core, but also fundamental in the development of any country. This view that we hold so dearly as BOSETU has been emphasized and replicated many times through one of the oldest phrases that “teaching is the mother of all professions”. Teachers have taught, trained, produced skilled manpower and human resource for this country from scratch since the period that the country attained independence in 1966. Almost 51 years down the lane, we now hear of phrases such as saturated labour markets, phrases that were not part the vocabulary of Botswana during the time when we attained independence. This is owing to the fact that teachers have soiled, toiled and labored very hard for the country to reach such a status. We as BOSETU, are however worried and troubled by the fact in spite of the obvious centrality of the teaching profession in the development of the country, teaching remains unrecognized and neglected. The education system in terms of structures and policies is as well neglected if not if not abandoned, while the conditions of service for teachers remain deplorable.
In Finland for instance, a country with a human resource driven economy rather an economy driven by natural resource as is the case in Botswana, education is a dominant sector in resource allocation, and teaching is the highest paying profession. We urge Botswana to adopt the Finland education system which thus far is regarded as the best in the world. Teachers, however, have outdone themselves; they have done extraordinarily well even under these debilitating circumstances. As we celebrate this year’s Teachers Day we need to seriously introspect in an endeavor to extrapolate, canvass and ponder on the challenges facing the education system and teaching as a profession in this country. As this country celebrates with the teachers we be should alive to the fact that we do so at the time that the final results for national and international examinations across all levels are at their lowest ever. This situation in our view, calls for us as teachers, stakeholders and government to use this opportunity to introspect.
BOSETU Secretary General