April 4 2010: With hardly two months left before government finalizes the nationwide takeover of brigades, employees at Ramatea Vocational School (RAVOS) are yet to know what will become of them. The RAVOS board is currently embroiled in a bitter feud with government over compensation for some construction projects that took place when the board was still running the school.
While the board insists that it has to be compensated for the development projects, government maintains that she will not make any compensation payments.
The board has since decided to take temporary ownership of the school, but government has warned that she will not provide any subsidies to the school if the board decides to go it alone and run the school.
Lecturers at the school have also complained that they are caught in the crossfire, as they have not been notified of any developments in the standoff between government and the RAVOS board.
“Government has made her position very clear, and even set a deadline for the brigade takeover, but the board has still not consulted with us” said a lecturer at the school.
Absalom Moseki, the Principal at RAVOS, who is also the Executive Secretary of the Board of Governors, has played down the employees’ query about not being consulted.
“As far as I am concerned all the relevant information pertaining to the cause of delay in the takeover of RAVOS has been communicated to the employees,” said Moseki.
Moseki said that the board decided to negotiate for compensation with government as RAVOS was owned by the Lutheran Church. He said that after government rejected their request they asked that they be allowed to continue running the school. Once again government refused, saying that they would not get any government support if they run the school privately.
But some lecturers have revealed that they have been forewarned that the RAVOS board will not allow government to take over their school without any compensation, opting rather to close down the school or use it for something else.
Moseki vehemently denied these allegations, saying that he is optimistic that government will re consider her stand, such that any talk of closure is preemptive.
Information reaching Sunday Standard indicates that the board has since requested a meeting with the minister of education, after their proposals was rejected by the Department of Vocational Education and Training (DVET).
Meanwhile, the Deputy Director of DVET, Moffat Samuel has expressed concern at the delays, saying that they might not meet the targeted deadline for the takeovers.