COSTA RICA NEWS – The Ministry of Public Education (MEP) Monday night made payments of back salaries to teachers who have not received their wages and as such ordered them back to classes, to end their strike that is now in its fourth week.
The MEP guarantees that it will not take any disciplinary sanctions or payroll deductions to teachers who are back in the classroom today, Tuesday, May 27.
A document by the MEP’s Vice Ministry of Institutional Planning and Regional Coordination, addressed to each school, orders classes to resume immediately and without further delay, asking school principal to provide a list of all teachers back in the classroom.
The MEP added that, in the event there are any problems with any payments, affected teachers can deal with it at the Escuela Porfirio Brenes in San José, stressing that the payments made Monday night are for wages owed up to May 15.
Some 77.500 teachers have been affected by the problems with the MEP’s payroll software, Integra2, a system put in place by the previous administration and forced teachers to take to the streets at the beginning of the month.
Education Minister, Sonia Marta Mora, said the payment was in the amount of ¢36.5 billion colones and that teachers who want to take advantage of the special loan set up last with with members banks of the Asociación Bancaria Costarricense, can continue to do so.
Despite the payment Monday night and the call by the government for a return to class, the labour unions vow to continue the strike until “the last colon” owed to teachers is paid.
The Central Government did not define what would be the possible sanctions for teachers who violate the directive to report to work today.