Teachers seek recruitment to fill gaps


Nigeria on Monday joined the rest of the world to mark World Teachers Day. Teachers used the occasion to seek the plugging of the hole in teacher-student ratio, write Kofoworola Belo-Osagie, Adekunle Jimoh, Ahmed Rufa’i, Bassey Anthony, James Azania, Rasaq Ibrahim, Gbenga Omokhunu and Toba Adedeji.

 

 

GOVERNORS on Monday said without teachers development would be a mirage. They spoke during activities to mark Teachers Day in their states. The Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT) called for better conditions of service in states and the recruitment of more teachers to fill gaps.

Kwara

In Kwara State, Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq hailed teachers for their contributions to the human race.

“I salute our teachers on this day of the World Teachers’ Day. Our administration is convinced that the future of our society is closely tied to the quality and welfare of our teachers who are in charge of moulding our children and preparing them for the future. This explains the importance the administration attaches to the education sector, including ongoing efforts to secure brighter prospects for the teachers,” the governor said in a statement by his spokesman, Rafiu Ajakaye.

He added: “As our teachers join their contemporaries to commemorate the World Teachers’ Day, the administration urges them to reflect on the challenges that COVID-19 has brought to the global economy and the need for everyone to adapt to the new normal. This is particularly true in the education sector where virtual class is becoming increasingly important along with a need for every teacher to key into virtual teaching techniques.

“On our part, we will continue to cherish and honour our teachers while working hard to improve their welfare and working environment within available resources.”

Oyo

Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde commended teachers for their dedication and support to his administration.

A statement by Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology Olasunkanmi Olaleye saluted Oyo teachers for being partners in the drive to promote qualitative education in the State.

He urged them not to relent in working towards returning Oyo State to its rightful position in academic excellence among other States in Nigeria.

“We felicitate with teachers in Oyo State as they join others in the world to mark this year’s World Teachers’ Day, they have proved beyond doubt that they are partners in progress with the support given the present administration to take our State back to its rightful place in academic excellence among others in Nigeria.

“They have supported this government in its drive to make education available to all and bring back the out-of-school children to class with our free and qualitative education to our pupils in public primary and secondary schools across the State.

“They have shown their gallantry in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic as they gave the required support to combat and contain the dreaded disease from spreading to our schools, we urge them not to relent in these efforts so that we can achieve the standard of education that we crave to bequeath to the coming generation,” he appealed.

The Executive Chairman, Oyo State Universal Basic Education Board, Dr. Nureni Adeniran, said the government would not rest on its oars to provide incentives to teachers, especially in the rural areas to encourage young talents to join the teaching profession.

“Teachers are one of the most influential forces for equity, access and quality in education. Engr. Seyi Makinde’s administration places much emphasis on human capital development.

“We will give more attention to training and re-training of teachers to enhance their capacities for effective service delivery,” he said.

Jigawa

In Jigawa, the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT) rejected Governor Muhammadu Badaru Abubakar’s plan to establish N-Teach in the state

The NUT chairman, Comrade Abdulkadir Yunusa Jigawa, spoke with reporters in his office as part of the World Teachers Day celebration.

He said: “There are about 700 primary schools that have limited teachers despite enough enrolment of pupils in the school. School enrolment has seriously improved in the state as a result of the Federal Government’s school feeding programme.”

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He called on the state government to massively recruit permanent and pensionable teachers who would be committed.

Akwa Ibom

The NUT in Akwa Ibom lamented the rapidly dwindling number of teachers in classrooms in the state.

Its chairman, Comrade Etim Ukpong, appealed to the state government to employ more qualified teachers to fill the void in the state.

“We have also witnessed during the year; the dearth of attention on retired and families of teachers who died in active service, delays in payment of monthly pensions to veterans of the teaching profession, lack of gratuity, thereby increasing the fears in the hearts of serving teachers,” he said.

The NUT boss also raised concerns on over-bloated sources of inspection, monitoring and supervision by agents of the government, with attendant unfriendliness and fault -findings “on the few, overloaded teachers left in the system, thereby creating confusion”.

The teachers also reminded the government on the pending issues of 7.5percent contributory pension refunds, arrears and present Leave Grants and the need for Teachers in the state to be made to feel a sense of belonging, to boost their morale to serve the state better.

The Head of Civil Service, Elder Effiong Essien, applauded the teachers in the state for their sacrifices to build generations of sound future leaders.

Represented by the Permanent Secretary, Office of the Head of Service, Mrs Ekaette Ekanem, Essien noted the demands of the teachers and pledged to take prompt steps to address them.

Lagos

In Lagos, the NUT called on the Lagos State government to employ more teachers to fill the vacuum created by retired teachers in public schools.

The state Union Chairman, Mr Adedoyin Adesina, said the union recommended that the state government should employ new teachers-on-subjects basis.

He acknowledged that the government had employed some teachers in both the secondary and primary schools earlier this year but “the number is still short of expectation’’.

“Many teachers have retired this year and the vacuum has to be filled in the various subjects,’’ he said.

Adesina also spoke on the need for additional classrooms to space students and prevent the over-crowded situation.

“This is the ideal, to implement the UNESCO’s standard of one teacher to 25 learners in a classroom. Low-cost buildings can be built as an emergency across the state,’’ he said.

The union leader remarked that teachers were the central figures and players in educational development.

“UNESCO recommends 26 per cent budget provision for education but no federal, state or local government has ever met this recommendation. The resultant effect is the poor standard in education.

“Therefore, we have to re-image and re-invent this situation,’’ he said.

Adesina commended Governor Babjide Sanwo-Olu on the proactive and pragmatic measures put in place to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

“Our visionary and the highly ingenious governor had long before the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic introduced digital training and learning into our primary school education.

“We gave our utmost support for that innovative idea by encouraging our teachers, who successfully drive such the idealistic and imaginative concept.

Delta

Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa commended Nigerian teachers for their role in nation-building.

The governor, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, in Asaba, described teachers as the bedrock of the nation’s development.

According to him, no other profession can metamorphose without the input of teachers.

He commended teachers in Delta for their commitment to teaching and learning in all public and private schools in the state.

The governor said his administration placed a high premium on the welfare of teachers and other workers in the public service.

Okowa said the state government had continued to ensure that the salaries of teachers were paid regularly as and when due.

He said as a government, Delta was committed to improving the environment for teaching and learning, which had resulted in the construction and rehabilitation of school buildings and the provision of furniture for teachers and students.

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“It gives me great pleasure to celebrate with teachers in Nigeria and particularly in Delta as they join their counterparts all over the world to mark World Teachers’ Day 2020.

“I thank teachers in Delta for their contributions to nation-building and the intellectual development of our children.

“As an administration, we place a very high premium on the welfare of teachers and other workers in the state hence the regular payment of their salaries as and when due.

“We have also ensured that we improved on the teaching and learning environment for our teachers and students through the provision and necessary infrastructure and materials.

“For these efforts, we have made in rejuvenating our public schools, our people now have confidence in patronising public schools in Delta.

•NUT President Nasir Idris

“As you celebrate this day, I congratulate you all our dear teachers and look forward to a more rewarding engagement between the government and teachers in Delta,” Okowa said.

Kogi

The NUT in Kogi State rued the condition in which members have found themselves in the state.

Speaking in Lokoja, the capital, on the occasion, NUT Chairman Ayodele Thomas said: “It is not well with teachers in the state.”

He said the sad lot of the teachers has continued to adversely affect not only the teaching profession but also those being impacted on.

He lamented that the regime of percentage salary to teachers in the state has affected the teaching profession negatively.

He called on the state government to commence the payment of their full salaries forthwith and save teachers from the harrowing experience they daily endure.

“The non-cash backing of promotions and non-payment of other allowances that would have motivated the teachers in the state has contributed to the low performance, and not even giving their best in the discharge of their duties,” he said.

He called on the Head of Service (HoS), Kogi State for the release of the names of teachers yet to be “cleared” during the workers’ screening, explaining that if such were done, it would help boost manpower in the teaching profession.

Ekiti

Ekiti State Governor Dr. Kayode Fayemi described teachers as major stakeholders in the drive towards nation building, adding that government policies in the education sector cannot succeed without the unflinching support and cooperation of teachers.

Dr Fayemi urged teachers to brace up for the tasks of rebuilding the school system which had been under lockdown in the last six months.

The Chairman of the NUT, Mr Samuel Olugbesan and Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Secondary Schools (ASUSS), Mr Sola Adigun, in separate presentations, commended the governor for his giant strides in the education sector.

They cited introduction of free and compulsory education; renovation of schools; appointment of three tutors general among the secondary school principals; establishment of four new secondary schools to address the challenge of overcrowding in some schools and implementation of 2015 promotion with financial benefits, car and housing loans for secondary school teachers as part of the goodies the teachers had received from the government.

Fayemi enjoined teachers to maintain the hard work for which they were known to improve on the remarkable performance of students in their external examinations and other related academic activities as they are gradually returning to school.

He applauded the steadfastness and dedication of the entire teachers in the State, both in the public and private schools many of whom could not attend the ceremony which was held in line with Covid-19 safety protocols that disallow large gatherings.

“We are not unmindful of the importance of quality education to manage the socio-political and economic challenges being encountered by society. A good and dutiful teacher is not just a person who teaches academic lessons, rather, he is the one who mentors and helps the learner in each sphere of his life,” Fayemi said.

Abuja

Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Malam Muhammad Bello said Nigeria cannot afford to ignore education.

Bello hailed teachers in the FCT.

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According to a statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Anthony Ogunleye, the minister said: “Education is the bedrock of society and no nation desirous of progress and development can afford to ignore the education sector.

“We remain committed to the development of education in all its ramifications in the FCT and we will continue to commit time and resources to ensure that the sector meets up with the expectations of residents of the FCT.”

Osun

The Osun State government applauded teachers’ sense of commitment and dedication to duty.

In a statement by Commissioner for Information and Civic Orientation Mrs. Funke Egbemode, the government acknowledged the critical roles played by teachers in the state and praised them for joining in the onerous task to raise responsible and knowledgeable citizenry for the future of the State.

Mrs. Egbemode, who noted that teaching was a noble profession, lauded teachers in Osun for their patriotism, sacrifice and commitment to human capital development.

She also appreciated the teachers for identifying with the administration of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola and for their understanding and patience, especially during this challenging period occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The statement read: “The government of Osun felicitates with teachers in the State on the occasion of the 2020 World Teachers Day. We wish to use this opportunity to applaud the sense of commitment and dedication to duty by teachers in our State. No doubt, teachers play critical roles in society and we are glad in Osun that we are blessed with worthy and dependable educators.

“Teaching is indeed a noble profession, as teachers contribute to preparing and shaping the future through imparting knowledge and morals in the children. We commend teachers in Osun for their patriotism, sacrifice and commitment to human capital development. Such commitment has earned Osun State laurels won by students from public schools at both regional and national levels.

“We also appreciate teachers for identifying with the administration of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola and for their understanding and patience, especially during this challenging period occasioned by the Coronavirus pandemic.

“The administration of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola will continue to prioritise the welfare and professional development of teachers and other workers in the State. We will always support teachers to further impact on students those values that will transform the future of our State positively and build capacities relevant to the needs of the state to reduce the level of unemployment.

“We urge our teachers to remain dedicated to their duties and avoid conduct that can cause disrepute to the teaching profession.”

Ogun

Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun announced the donation of a two-bedroom bungalow to Mr Odegbola Ayodele, a Junior Secondary School (JSS) teacher in Abeokuta Grammar School.

The house, located at the state-owned Princes Court, Abeokuta, was given to Ayodele for emerging as the overall best teacher in the state.

Abiodun announced this while addressing executive members of the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT), Academic Staff Union Secondary Schools (ASUSS) and the All-Nigeria Conference of Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCOPSS), in Abeokuta.

Aside from Ayodele, Mr Adewale Abayomi from Odua Comprehensive High School, Imoru, Ijebu-Ode, who was the best teacher in the senior secondary school category, was given the sum of N2.5 million by the governor.

Abiodun also gave Mrs Mary Adeyemi from St. Paul’s School II, Sagamu, who emerged as the best primary school teacher, the sum of N2 million.

He said the government had instituted a yearly best teachers’ awards scheme in different categories to appreciate outstanding teachers in the state and those who had distinguished themselves in the course of carrying out their duties.

“We will continue to celebrate innovation. We will encourage consistency. Our administration will continue to make the welfare of our teachers our priority. Our teachers’ reward will not be in heaven, but here on earth,” he said.



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