The Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN) and INSTILL Education have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on capacity building for teachers in Nigeria.
This was disclosed by the Council’s Registrar, Professor Josiah Ajiboye, on Thursday May 4, 2023.
He noted that a pilot phase of implementation of the MoU would soon commence with a capacity building for eight weeks.
According to Ajiboye, the MoU has three major components- pre-service teachers, integrating pre-service with in-service teachers and their capacity-building programmes while expressing confidence that the involvement to instil education would bridge the gap between pre-service and in-service teachers.
“With regards to our teachers, if you look at what we have said here today, three major components actually were identified: the pre-service teachers, even integrating pre-service with the in-service. We have looked at pre-service teachers, the in-service teachers and their training programmes and we have been able to see that there is a gap,” he said.
Lamenting that 70 per cent of the unqualified teachers lack the prerequisites to be registered by the Council, the TRCN boss stated that a large number of teachers in Nigeria have never been exposed to training and have been using outdated equipment for illustration.
“A large number of teachers in private schools in Nigeria today are not qualified. We wanted to use a consultant to get revenue from teachers in private schools. When we carried out a survey, we observed that a reasonable amount of 70% of teachers in the South-West are not qualified as well.
“They are not registrable with the TRCN. So that is to tell you that there is a big gap. So you cannot call them teachers but cheaters. You know that there’s a difference between teachers and cheaters. If you are not a teacher, you must be a cheater.
“So, these people are not registerable with TRCN because they don’t possess the requisite qualification that will allow us to register them. There’s a big gap there.
“Instill may be looking in the future on how to fill that gap. Like they are doing in South Africa; they may also, but the major component of this MOU is about the in-service teachers. How do we go about capacitating these in-service teachers, upskilling them,” he said.
On his part, the Dean of Operation at Instill Education, Tom Parry, said the training received through his organisation will always end with a practical applicable component so that teachers have an opportunity to practice and understand.
Parry said the MoU will focus on upskilling in-service teachers, adding that in the future, his organization hopes to bring together the pre and in-service programmes into a micro-credential division so that teachers can continuously upskill themselves, gain access to relevant quality, affordable practical training that is recognised by the government, practical in their classrooms and help them to deliver better learning outcomes.
“Beyond the simple training processes that we build into our platform, we also think about the incentive structures. So, this is where we’re talking more about this workforce development platform. Teachers, I mean, there are some teachers who will be incentivized simply to do training for the sake of getting better.
“But the reality is, many teachers have childcare or other care responsibilities, they have second jobs, they have other lives, they cannot always dedicate the time needed to do it just for the goodwill of it just for the love of training,” he said.
Parry lamented that 90 per cent of learners in Africa cannot read for meaning by the end of primary school while 30 per cent of primary teachers and 50 per cent of secondary teachers are unqualified.
He added that it is just the nature of the system and not an indictment of it, and without recognising these realities, we cannot start to address them.
Earlier, the TRCN Director, Planning, Research and Statistics Ugo-Ali Lawrence, said the Council first met with representatives of Instill Education on 14th November 2022 where it commenced discussions on the proposed collaboration to train Nigerian teachers.
Lawrence said since 2015, the organisation has delivered over 1.5 million hours of professional development, coaching and mentoring sessions to about 100,000 teachers and school leaders across five countries namely, Ghana, Kenya, South Africa, Uganda and India.