Students in Belize City and across the district had a half day of school today as their teachers met at the Holy Redeemer Parish Hall for the bi-annual general membership meeting of the Belize City branch of the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU). The Union’s branches have been meeting since late August and the Belize District, which is easily the largest of the ten branches, were the last to hold their meeting. Kathleen Flowers, the incumbent president, was re-elected for another two-year term. She spoke with us at the meeting’s conclusion.
Kathleen Flowers, Re-elected president, BNTU Belize City: It’s our first regular general meeting for the school year and every two years it becomes an election meeting. So that was the dominant feature on today’s agenda. We also deal with matters of concern from our membership and those were raised from the technical vocational teachers concerned about training that will be offered for them to operate themselves, to ensuring our auxiliary staff that they will be getting their salary adjustments for this year along with other issues of training and major concerns for commuting to Belize City and things like that. Usually just a few issues that the teachers want cleared up and those were dealt with. I might not be able to read it of the top but I know the serving executive has returned with just some shuffling of positions. At this point I have returned as the President, the vice president has also returned, the secretary is now Ms. Elena Smith, the assistant secretary is Ms. Keisha Williams from Gwen Lizarraga High School and the trustees. The Treasurer has returned as well Mr Orvin Melendrez. The Trustees are Mr. Rudolph Hanacky, Ms Coral Lord and Idalida Guerra. The auditors are Mr Mario Rodriguez and Ms. Lisa Bernard.
According to Flowers the BNTU’s Council of Management will be discussing the outstanding issues brought up at the branch meetings, as well as the ongoing labour situations with sister unions although the latter did not come up during today’s meeting. The general meetings are held every February and September, either side of the national convention during April.