Is the NTC moving too fast too soon?

Sun, 25 Apr 2021 Source: Osei Tutu

For those of us who have been observing the body language of the National Teaching Council since its inception in 2017, its directives to the private schools to recruit only licensed teachers do not come as a surprise.

According to the Executive Director of the National Schools Inspectorate Authority, Dr. Haggar Hilda Ampadu, any private school that recruits unlicensed teachers in a month's time would be sanctioned.

Even though the NTC has not as yet issued any statement to that effect, it has not denied the assertion.

What is worrying about this directive is the NTC's deliberate effort to play ignorance of the situation at the private schools.

Per the NTC's own requirements, only teachers who have diploma or degree in education qualify to write the licensure examination.

However most of the teachers in private schools and those who wish to apply to teach there don't have diploma or degree in education and thus cannot write the licensure examination.

So expecting private schools to recruit only licensed teachers means completely stopping them from recruiting altogether.

What is even more worrying is that once these non-professional teachers manage to get diploma in education and pass the licensure examination, they leave the private schools for the public schools for higher remuneration and job security.

So most private schools have to always rely mainly on non-professional and unlicenced teachers. Telling them to recruit only licensed teachers in a month's time is indirectly telling them to stop recruitment and fold up. That is too much to say the least.

What at all is the reason behind having only licensed teachers in the educational space? Is it to improve the quality of teaching and standard of education?

If the idea is to improve the quality of teaching and standard of education, then the NTC is certainly misfiring. Trust me, this licensing thing will not make a dent on the quality of education.

Effective supervision is what will improve the quality of education and in this, the private schools are not lacking. That is why, in spite of their relatively less qualified teachers, the private schools produce the best of results, at least at the Junior High School level. To the extent that the professional teachers in the public schools prefer to send their own wards there.

I therefore wish to to urge the NTC to hasten slowly in their effort to get every teacher in the classroom licensed.

Columnist: Osei Tutu