The Chairman, Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT), Lagos State branch, Chief Segun Raheem, thursday stressed the need for the government to reinstate the abrogated allowances of the teachers, noting that it would go a long way in boosting their morale.
The allowances, he said, included duty-posts, science, riverine, rural, boarding house, among others.
Raheem, who made this known at the 2017 World Teachers’ Day celebration with theme: ‘Teaching in Freedom Empowering Teaching’, expressed concern that teachers who are posted to rural or riverine areas for instance, often had challenges getting to such locations thereby allowing children to miss key subject teachers.
According to him, “Employers have a way of boosting the morale of their staff to appreciate their input in the progress of the corporate organisation. A sudden cut in these morale boosters will dampen the spirit of concerned staff.”
He emphasised the need for more teachers’ recruitment and retention in the education sector to cope with the constant increase in enrolment at different levels, just as he expressed regret that a lot of teachers are retiring on a daily basis without a replacement for their positions.
“There is no over-emphasising the fact that teachers are very vital in any educational system as they are the professionals who interpret the aims, goals and plans of education and ensure that children are educated in the direction of those aims and goals. It therefore means that these very important should be available insufficient numbers,” he added.
The National President of the union, Michael Alogba, expressed concern that a lot of teachers have been sent to their early graves as a result of neglect from their employers, saying they are made to work under poor conditions and remunerations with little or no professional freedom. “The teachers must be appreciated in their chosen career even in their culpable neglect. The Nigerian teachers will continue to contribute to nation building as none can grow above its education system,” he said
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, who disclosed that his administration would constitute a committee to implement all the promises made to teachers in the state so that they can get their rewards, added that primary school teachers who had attained the hitherto grade level 15 could now be upgraded to level 17 which is the highest grade level for public servants.