By John Shiklam
The Executive Secretary of the National Commission for Nomadic Education (NCNE), Prof. Bashir Usman, has decried the dearth of specialised nomadic school teachers.
He also lamented that even the few specialised teachers were being indiscriminately transferred to conventional schools.
Speaking at a training workshop on biometric capturing of nomadic teachers on Monday in Zaria, Kaduna State, Usman said lack of qualified teachers is undermining the efforts of the commission in providing quality education for nomads.
Usman, who was represented by the Director, Social Mobilisation and Women Development, Alhaji Mohammed Dan Iya, said nomadic school teachers were being indiscriminately transferred to conventional schools after specialised training.
According to him, the retention and tracking of teachers in nomadic schools is of great concern to the commission in its collective efforts to ensuring standard and assuring quality as enshrined in the Ministerial Strategic Plan (MSP).
“Over the years, the commission has faced challenges arising from the death of teachers in terms of both number and quality.
“More so, the few nomadic school teachers are often transferred indiscriminately from nomadic schools to the conventional ones.
“Such transfers are done after receiving specialised trainings on how to handle the peculiarities associated with the provision of basic education to the nomads.
“The retention and tracking of teachers in nomadic schools in view of their critical role in the teaching and learning outcomes is of great concern to the commission in our collective efforts towards ensuring standard and assuring quality as enshrined in the Ministerial Strategic Plan (MSP),” Usman said.
He called on states and local governments to ensure that teachers posted to nomadic schools are retained and accorded the deserving attention.
He said as part of strategies to curtail some of the challenges, the commission is working towards devising ways and means of tracking teachers posted to nomadic schools after training so as to address the negative practice of incessant transfers.
The NCNE executive secretary said
an aggregated data on the number of teachers, their locations, level of qualification by gender and track as well as teachers’ professional development across all the local government areas will be tracked.
He called on the Chairmen of state Universal Basic Education Boards and local government Education Secretaries to allow all teachers posted to nomadic schools to remain on their duty post.
“Even if they will be transferred, such transfers should be to another nomadic school,” he stated.
Usman explained that the objectives of the training are: “to generate evidenced-based data of nomadic school teachers regarding qualifications, gender, status of employment, years of service, and pupil’s teacher ratio for informed planning”.
“Identify, cluster and map nomadic schools and teachers in the constituency using Geo-Referenced Infrastructure and Demographic Data for Development (GRID3).
“Identify teacher capacity development gaps and training needs.
“Track teacher professional development and check indiscriminate transfers.
“Develop a robust data base (Integrating the Census Data and Biometric),” he said.
Usman noted that there is a paradigm shift in accessing donor support which is hinged on the availability of evidenced-based and verifiable data, stressing that
initiatives, such as the data capturing, will assist both the commission and other relevant stakeholders in leveraging resources.
He said: “As part of the requirements for this study, we shall deploy latest technology such as the use of Geo-Referenced Infrastructure and Demographic Data for Development (GRID).
“As a pilot study, nomadic primary schools within Baruten and Kaiama Federal Constituency in Kwara State will be covered and its successful implementation will provide a leeway for scaling up to the remaining LGAs and other states in the country.”
Usman said further that the importance of quality data needs not be over emphasized for proper planning and implementation of programmes.
“In this regard, the intervention would provide a unique opportunity for the commission and other interested parties and stakeholders in accessing credible data and information towards strengthening collaboration and support.
“Through this study, we shall identify teacher capacity development gaps and training needs,” he said.