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DOE assessment finds need for immediate teacher hiring

As part of their pledge for transparency in the new administration, Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga has approved the emergency hiring of 18 teachers into the public schools, with the possibility of more teachers, says Department of Education Director, Dr. Salu Hunkin Finau.


This came as a result of her assessment conducted in the schools when she first came on board. She explained that these available positions were for the slots of teachers who have resigned or retired and the positions are budgeted for FY2013.


She noted that following their interviews, the teachers were hired, while their employment documents are being processed. Finau said usually it takes up to 60 days to process employment work for any government employee, but given the immediate need for teachers to fill the classrooms she met with the governor, who authorized the hiring.


Finau said there are many problems within the schools that need to be addressed but filling the classroom teachers’ jobs was a priority and other immediate needs will be attended to later.


She told Samoa News that they must have teachers given the importance of education for each student.


“Our children need to be educated; it equips us and it opens doors to brilliant career opportunities… it fetches better prospects in career and growth and every employer today requires his prospective employees to be well-educated and have expertise. So, education becomes an eligibility criteria for employment in any sector of the industry,” she said.


Human Resources Director, Le’i Sonny Thompson, told Samoa News that he signed off on the all proper paperwork for the emergency hires, and noted that this follows the governor’s approval, however each qualified teacher is required to go through the clearance process that every government employee must undergo.


“And, if a teacher has a record, HR will take the appropriate action and remove them," he said, adding, "If DOE fills in the slots already budgeted, and the demand still exists for teachers in the classrooms, the government will hire more teachers with the approval of the governor.”