Kuni Tyessi in Abuja
Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN) has revealed that in its efforts to end quackery in the teaching profession, over two million qualified teachers for basic education have been registered by the council.
Despite this feat, which has set in motion the council’s readiness to correct the notion of teaching being an all-comers affair, the recorded number of qualified teachers according to the council remains inadequate.
Also, in ensuring that the qualified teachers live up to expectation and are equipped in not just what to teach, but in how to teach, the federal government has concluded plans towards ensuring that every teacher is computer savvy in a project named “One teacher, one laptop project.”
TRCN Registrar and Chief Executive Officer, Prof. Josiah Ajiboye, who disclosed this weekend in Abuja, while emphasising that teaching is no longer a profession to be managed before better jobs come, said the era of using teaching as political patronage was over.
He said with changing classroom dynamics, opportunities have been given to teachers with deficiencies to quickly correct and upgrade their certificates, as contrary to beliefs in some quarters; the exercise has not been designed to witch-hunt or make persons lose their jobs.
He said for teachers’ welfare, there’s a policy called “teacher career path policy” which will document teachers efforts with a bid to placing them on new career path which would be professionally fulfilling as already, the document has been approved by the National Education Council (NEC) at a ministerial session in Port Harcourt after passing several phases.
He said: “Nigeria has over two million registered teachers and this is staggering and inadequate. The whole of Africa needs about seven million qualified teachers. You must have an educational qualification before you can qualify to write the exams.
“We are set to removing quackery from the teaching profession and with effect from January, the council will start monitoring and the aim is not to sack, but to sanitise the education system. It is to make sure that quackery is removed as they abound in all professions and to make sure that it is not an all-comers affair.
“One teacher, one laptop project will commence soon. It is to be paid by instalment by the teachers. Other teachers’ welfare matters will be considered including training and retraining. Classroom dynamics are changing, hence the need for this. Teachers must be able to learn, relearn and unlearn. So, there will be digital literacy training for all teachers,” he added.