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Havelu GPS clears up issues surrounding controversial enforcement of gifts for teachers and exam supervisors

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 04/10/2017


As thousands of students sat the last leg of their Secondary Entrance Examination, parents, in a thanksgiving spirit, donated gifts to the teachers in appreciation of their hard work over the past year in teaching and preparing their children for this exam.


Of course this is not required or compulsory, but it has become the norm over the years. However, in recent years this has sparked arguments and again at this year’s examination, this became an issue outside of the exam room.


In the days leading up to the class 6 students entrance exam, a few parents took to social media to voice their dissatisfaction over the apparent enforcement of gift-donation from the parents to the teachers at the Government Primary School of Haveluloto and Tofoa.


According to this post, the parents or guardians of the class 6 students expecting to sit the exam, were required to each donate 100 pa’anga as gifts for the teachers as well as the examination supervisors.


Others then raised concerns over the legality of this money collection and even accused the school staff of being greedy.


However, in speaking to Radio Tonga News, Sisi Latu Hungalu, a teacher who is also the mother of one of the class 6 students at GPS Havelu, clarified the decision to collect the money, had not come from the school but rather from a collective group of the class 6 student’s parents


It is usual for parents of the class 6 students, to meet and discuss what they believe they should do in appreciation of the teachers and also the exam supervisors


Hungalu says, the parent who had voiced concern over the collection of the 100 pa’anga, was not present at the parents meeting. She believes this may have been the cause of the misunderstanding.


On the other hand, teachers who do not want to be named, say the gifts or donations should not be enforced or should not be made to be a burden on the parents as this may affect the students’ performance in the exam.


To them, the best gift is the student’s success in the examination.


© Radio and Television Tonga News