‘Jones is the worst’, says Poonka

Former president of the Barbados Secondary Teachers’ Union (BSTU) Wayne Poonka Willock is calling for a single teachers’ union, arguing the solidarity would make the educators stronger as they take on the Ronald Jones-led Ministry of Education.

Currently, the Mary Redman-led BSTU and the Barbados Union of Teachers (BUT) headed by Pedro Shepherd operate independently of each other, even though they frequently fight similar causes.

“I strongly believe that as time goes on there should be only one teachers’ union in Barbados. They need to stand together in strength and unity and show these people what is going on because this Minister of Education is the worst that we have had from [my] in education, which is 39 years. The worst,” Willock said.

He argued that with two unions representing different sections of the teaching service, the educators were deprived of sufficient protection from the ministry, which he said had no qualms about running over anyone bold enough to stand up for their rights.

“They [Ministry of Education] are very vindictive and they victimize people within their own ranks and otherwise. I have been one of the victims of that sort of political manipulation because I speak out and don’t abide by any status quo. That is ridiculous,” he said.

Willock was of the view that the ministry seemed to have no clear policies, making it dangerous to a divided teaching service.

As an example he made reference to the contentious issue of mobile phones in schools, which is opposed by the teachers unions, but which Jones insists will be allowed.

“If you follow the cell phone issue it has been an up and down ride [of], ‘yes you can use cell phones’, then, ‘no you can’t use cell phones’, now, ‘yes you can use cell phones’.

“Now you have the principals themselves kicking up against it because when you look at some of these videos going around and the sort of fighting and theft that goes on in schools as a result of cell phones, they need to make up their minds what they are doing. They need to create a firm policy and stick by it; but the ministry is confused,” stressed Willock, a former acting principal of the Princess Margaret Secondary School and a musician who was formerly involved in the Junior Calypso Monarch competition.

The former BSTU president also contended that the union’s ongoing fight for compensation for the marking of Caribbean Examination Council-administered school-based assessment projects would gain much more traction under the banner of a single teachers’ union.

The BUT has thrown its support behind the BSTU on this matter. However, Willock expressed concern that with teachers from other Caribbean islands seeming unperturbed by the SBA issue, Barbadian teachers would need to pool all of their resources if they were to have their demands met.

16 Responses to ‘Jones is the worst’, says Poonka

  1. Sheldine Dyall
    Sheldine Dyall May 12, 2017 at 1:58 am

    Even in speaking, riftrag talk.

  2. Janelle King
    Janelle King May 12, 2017 at 6:19 am

    Speaking good!!!

  3. fedup May 12, 2017 at 6:49 am

    I love it!!

  4. Me May 12, 2017 at 7:02 am

    This is the truth, truth , truth …….. And the only people worse than him are the joker’s he appoints to the school board.

  5. alfie May 12, 2017 at 7:15 am

    ya see i write about dat man jones already and dr dolittle and griffith bout using the school children and dat garbage power of choice and wunna always evaluating my comments but wunna could put up poonka wun,i talk straight like poonka too and to de point.Comment

  6. Randolph May 12, 2017 at 7:41 am

    So true,Jones is the biggest joker to ever hold the Education ministry.He keeps a lot of noise,but has nothing to show as far as the development of education.No wonder the PM threw him under the bus.I don’t feel sorry for him but I do for the bus.

  7. Lilian Lloyd
    Lilian Lloyd May 12, 2017 at 8:43 am


  8. Angus Benn
    Angus Benn May 12, 2017 at 8:49 am

    Failing grade. If the prime minister was a serious man. Jones would looking for a job.

  9. Arthur Collymore
    Arthur Collymore May 12, 2017 at 8:51 am

    For one who was a former teacher & union rep, better was expected. As a cabinet minister of this DLP admin, better was expected. As a man from humble origins, better was expected. His, along with his party’s performance in office, better was expected. DEM indeed the worse ever.

  10. Joy Waldron
    Joy Waldron May 12, 2017 at 9:09 am

    Whole government is worst from a sleeping pm to clowns want crack heads. Dems must go

  11. Milli Watt May 12, 2017 at 11:28 am

    like how dis shaping…….get through summer cause de unions like they don’t want to make a move in the examination term but wait till september. I like very much.

  12. Stupse May 12, 2017 at 2:05 pm

    Poonka continues on his tirade. He seems to be a bitter person who after brown-nosing did not get what he expected.

    Oh well, wipe the brown stuff off your nose and mouth and go rest. A total embarrassment to HC!

    I do agree Jones is by far the worst Minister of education.

  13. Tony May 12, 2017 at 5:05 pm

    I want the unions to consider carefully the idea of Service Commission for teachers such a Commissiom will have a politically appointed chairman Just check the Police SC

  14. Saga Boy May 12, 2017 at 8:15 pm

    It always amazes me how many of you simply behave like sheep and are ready and willing to criticism the DLP without even knowing the facts. This issue at Combermere has nothing to do with Jones. The employee who was dismissed was still on probation. The school therefore acted within its rights. The question of unfair dismissal is way off target. Mary Redman don’t have a clue about the ERA 2012. I doubt she has even read thebAct otherwise she would not be making a fool of herself.

  15. Samuel Skeete May 12, 2017 at 9:51 pm

    Plonks acted as a principal. Of course an acting one. He was awful and did not go on to be appointed. I have it on good authority that he blames Jones for his not being appointed. But he should remember he faced 35 different interviews before he was appointed as a Deputy Principal and that was when Jones became a Minister. He needs to blame his political friends. Mia took him out of Alleyne and sent him into schools doing the Mother Sally and Ruk a Tuk fan school children. Did he beg to become a principal and was looked over? Only asking. Investigate before castigate.

  16. Mikey May 13, 2017 at 11:26 am

    @Stupse,, who wouldnt be bitter when they are the victim of injustices ? Do You smile when you have been wronged ?
    Do you have an axe to grind with Poonka ?
    He has been an outstanding leader in his profession. What have You contributed to anybody either than “steupse” ?
    Examine the facts before you rush to stab Poonka.
    You people also have some ulterior motive and urge to do like the “house slaves”,,,, cause the field slaves to be whipped by Massa because they take a rest from the slave work, regaining their strength and composure to go back into the hot broiling Sun to put food in the House for the “house slaves” to eat , then turn their backs on the “slaving” field-brothers.


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