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PAC BANS TEACHERS FROM INVIGILATING

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LOBAMBA – Teachers will no longer be allowed to invigilate during external examinations after the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) found that the act gives rise to discrepancies and financial irregularities.


When the Ministry of Education and Training appeared before the PAC yesterday, it was also recommended that head teachers should be forbidden from participating in the marking of external examination scripts.


The PAC said the discrepancies were in that some teachers dominated the invigilation process and ended up claiming huge amounts of money yet the examinations were written during normal working hours.


The PAC said the invigilation should be outsourced to qualifying community members designated for this task.
Similarly, the PAC members were of the view that school head teachers were bound to be involved in conflict of interest by marking examination scripts as they were competing for best results.


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The PAC Chairperson, MP Phila Buthelezi, also said it was wrong to close schools early on account that teachers were engaged in the marking of scripts for external examinations.


He said the ministry should always ensure that the number of markers was increased to avoid delays in the marking process and release of results. “We are against the closing of schools early on account that teachers are off to attend to marking,” he said.


When some MPs registered concern that teachers would decry loss of earnings, the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Education and Training, Dr Sibongile Mtshali, clarified that teachers were being paid even during school holidays.


She said the MPs could include the issue in their recommendations when they compile reports, after which it would be reviewed at ministry level.
MP One Boy Zikalala said it was worrying that the council allowed head teachers to use different rates when paying invigilators, something that could affect the pupils who paid the school fees.

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