By Linda Violet Musa
As the country prepares for its general elections scheduled to next year, the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN), has cautioned politicians against employment of unqualified persons into the teaching profession, with the sole aim of finding them a means of livelihood to sustain themselves.
The Registrar/Chief Executive of TRCN, Prof. Josiah Ajiboye who spoke at a one-day capacity building workshop for Education Correspondents Association of Nigeria (ECAN) on Friday in Abuja, sponsored by the Council, insisted that Nigeria and Nigerians must do all within their powers to ensure quackery in the profession was totally eliminated.
Speaking on theme, ‘Sustaining the Gains of Certification in Nigeria’s Teaching Profession,’ he noted that the Council was currently undertaking some steps aimed at ensuring only qualified teachers were allowed to teach, as the only way to attain quality education in Nigeria was employing only quality teachers into the profession.
He said: “We should not allow the politicians to go and bring people. After the election they bring some people and rush them into teaching and said let them manage, no, this is not right, the country cannot progress this way. I want to thank the government, if there is anything the government has done is in the area of teachers. Mr president has approved everything taken to him.
“There is no way this country can have quality education if we don’t have quality teachers. The teachers are the nation builders. All the countries you see excelling in the area of education they take care of their teachers, they make sure the quality of people that go into teaching are the best of the best.
“In Finland, if you don’t have a Master you don’t go into teaching. The least qualification for teaching is Master degree. From secondary school, they select the best of the best that will go into teaching and they are well taken care of.
“If a teacher makes a mistake, it is generational and that is why it is a big challenge. We must all support the effort of TRCN to make sure that we remove quack teachers from the classroom.”
Chairman of ECAN, Mr. Chuks Ukwuatu commended the Council for restoring sanity in the teaching profession saying, “efforts of the Council in carrying out its core mandates of promoting excellence in education through effective registration and licensing of teachers; promoting professionalism through accreditation as well as monitoring and supervision of teacher licensing accreditation programmes, among others are indeed laudable.”