Egypt sacks hundreds of ‘terrorist’ teachers amid crackdown on pro-democracy protests
The Egyptian minister of education, Tarek Shawki, has announce that 1070 teachers with “extremist ideas” or previous convictions will be fired.
Shawki was referring to teachers who were members of the Muslim Brotherhood, according to the website of the Saudi-owned TV channel Al-Arabiya.
Speaking at a press conference on Monday, Shawki said that the ministry would also investigate teachers who were “unfit to work” as part of a drive to rid Egyptian schools of “destructive ideas” and “politically extreme views”.
Shawki added that the ministry was planning to employ 120,000 teachers on yearly contracts that could be extended for a maximum of three years, in order to make up for a severe shortage of teachers in government schools.
The shortage of teachers has meant that children in some parts of Egypt only go to school twice or three times a week. Egyptian schools also suffer from overcrowding, with some classes containing over 70 children.
Egypt’s first democratically elected president, Mohamed Morsi, was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, but since his overthrow in a 2013 military coup, the movement’s members have been subjected to severe persecution, with thousands arrested and tortured.
Egypt has recently seen a wave of protests against the government of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. The protests took place after a construction contractor, Mohamed Ali, published videos saying that Sisi had employed him to build luxurious palaces for himself with public money.
The government has responded by arresting thousands of people. The scandal has been dubbed “Palacegate” by some observers.
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