Hundreds of teachers, who allegedly quit their jobs to access their pensions, are fighting to be reinstated in permanent posts.
The Basic Education Department is reportedly not interested in full-time positions and will only take them back on a contractual basis.
The South African Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu) says teachers must be encouraged to stay in their jobs, but the department must also act in a lawful manner.
An employee is governed by the Labour Relations Act and there's no way where you can discriminate against those who have resigned and say the can only only occupy temporary positions.— Mugwena Maluleke, Sadtu Secretary General
Sadtu General Secretary Mugwena Maluleke says the department needs to rather focus on the issues which lead to teacher resignation.
We need experienced teachers. We need expertise. We are supposed to address the problems that led to them resigning and taking their pensions - instead of punishing them for having left the department because they are in debt or many other things.— Mugwena Maluleke, Sadtu Secretary General
According to Maluleke, the fact that teachers earn poor salaries contributes to the problem of early pensions.
Listen to the full conversation from The Midday Report: