Only 1.5 million teachers duly qualified —TRCN boss •Council reintroduces exams for teachers

Olusegun Ajiboye

THE Registrar and Chief Executive of the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN), Professor Olusegun  Ajiboye has expressed worry that only about 1.5 million teachers have been registered and certified by TRCN over the years in spite of the large number of teachers in primary and secondary schools, universities and other tertiary institutions in the country.

He lamented that a  recent study by the council has revealed that majority of Nigerian teachers are outdated in their pedagogical skills and techniques.

This factor, he said, had adversely affected the quality of teaching and learning in the country.

Ajiboye, spoke on Monday in Abuja, while briefing newsmen on his plans to restore the lost glory of Nigerian teachers as well as enhance the teacher quality and professionalism.

He disclosed that from January 2017, the council would reintroduce the professional qualifying examinations for all teachers both at the basic and tertiary levels of education in the country.

He noted that modules for the professional qualifying examination had been developed and test-run on sample groups to ascertain the validity and authenticity of the test constructs.

“It serves as one of the best tools for assessing, admitting and licensing practitioners in any profession. This assertion was confirmed by the maiden edition of the examination which revealed a lot of professional deficiencies of the Nigerian teacher.

“It showed that majority of Nigerian teachers are outdated in their pedagogical skills and techniques. As such, it became evident that they need urgent on-the-job training for necessary update,” he said.

He vowed that the council under his watch would eradicate quackery in the teaching profession, stressing that teaching must not be seen as all-comers affair.

“This figure will double in a very short time because TRCN would henceforth embark on aggressive campaign towards revamping the system for more productivity,” he said.

The new TRCN boss added that as the regulatory agency, the aim was to match teacher quality, discipline, professionalism, reward and dignity with international standards.

He disclosed that the Council was already working out a modality that would ensure that employers of teachers at the Federal, state and private levels across the country make teachers’ registration, certification and license by TRCN become a pre-requisite for getting teaching job in Nigeria.

He said TRCN would intensify the mandatory continuing professional development programme in raising the quality of teachers through constant in-service training for serving teachers.

He also disclosed that TRCN was willing and ready to partner with States and Local Governments in recruit, train and deploy graduates and Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE) holders seeking teaching opportunities.