The proprietor of Topfaith Schools, Mkpatak, in Essien Udim local government area, Akwa Ibom state, Dr Emmanuel Abraham, has urged the government to train teachers as a solution to the falling standard of education in Nigeria.
Speaking with newsmen in the school premises on Tuesday, Dr Abraham said teachers were given preference by the government in Education faculties across all universities in the early sixties and seventies but regretted such incentive is no more.
The proprietor observed that manpower has deteriorated in the school system such that those left now are described as “refugee teachers”.
He explained refugee teachers as those recruited into the school system without passion for the job but only found themselves in schools as teachers because there are no jobs.
Abraham, who one of his students scored the highest in the 2022 WAEC examination in Nigeria, argued that the cause of the falling standard of education in recent times is attitudinal and urged the government and stakeholders to tackle it accordingly.
“In my days, we were taught by grade two teachers from Teachers Training College( TTC), the pedagogy, methodology, psychology, content and context of how to be a teacher.
“So, when you come out, you are a complete personality to mould and bring out another personality.”
He observed that in the present educational system, the NCE teachers are more highly qualified than the grade two teachers in the past but are struggling in mathematics and other subjects outside his area of specialization.
“We need to enrich and expand the curricular lecture of the NCE programme or we train more grade two teachers so that they can operate in primary education as secondary schools by only teaching in their area of specialization or we dwell more on NCE primary education only.”
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The proprietor, who is celebrating the 20th anniversary of Topfaith schools in September, explained that the success of the school depends on extensive training of teachers, adding that the output of teachers depends on how they are treated to play the role of “second God” in the society.
He advised the government to review teachers’ recruitment process and welfare for effective intervention in the falling standard of education.
“In the days of Teachers Training College (TTC), it was tuition free for all teachers undergoing training in the college. The government paid them allowances to encourage brilliant indigent students but could not afford high fees for University education but decided to become teachers with incentives and understanding that at the end of the training, they would be employed.
” When I was in the Faculty of Education in the University, undergraduates in education, did not pay fees just to encourage us. We even received allowances from government. Now the incentives are no more. It contributes to the falling standard of education,” he said.
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