We Have Shortage Of Teachers In Primary Schools – Oyo NUT Chair

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The state chairman of the Oyo State Nigeria Union of Teachers, Comrade Raji Oladimeji Ismail has appealed to the governor of the state, Seyi Makinde for the recruitment of more teachers in primary schools in the state.

Comr. Raji said, the state has already adequate teachers in the secondary arm but there is a serious shortage of teachers in primary school.

The number one teacher in the state who has earlier been the former national president of the National Association of Primary School Games Teachers (NAPGAST) in an interview with MODUPE GEORGE appreciated the executive Governor of Oyo State, Engr ‘Seyi Makinde, for what he has done for teachers in the state and the education sector generally in Oyo State.

Comr. Raji speaks about the state of education in Oyo State and the activities of the union to complement the government’s efforts, among other issues.

What is the state of education generally in Oyo State?

Let me start on this note of special appreciation to the executive governor of Oyo State, Engr. Oluseyi Makinde has put in so much for teachers and the teaching profession in Oyo State. So, if we are to rate the level of Education in Oyo State, we would say there has been a tremendous improvement in terms of infrastructure, manpower, and welfare of teachers. We have been fortunate in Oyo State, especially in the area of primary education; we enjoy a lot of interventions from the Federal Government, through the World Bank project, BESDA, among others, because we are very alive to our responsibilities. Also, the state has been paying the counterpart fund, which has allowed us to access many of these intervention projects that have brought some level of development to education in the state.

 

Talking in terms of infrastructure, we move around and see that a lot of schools have been renovated and while some are newly built. However, the presence of peace is not the absence of agitation if you get to some areas you will still find one or two places where schools are not up to standard yet, most of which are in the rural areas, but the government is not resting. Concerning the teachers, consistent training and retraining exercises are in place. Under the national project called Better Education Service Delivery for All (BESDA), training is frequently organized for teachers in primary schools. While the Teaching Service Commission (TESCOM) also puts up training programs in collaboration with the University of Ibadan, the NUT’s State Executive Council (SEC) also puts up capacity-building workshops for the development of teachers. Another aspect we must mention is the prompt payment of teachers’ salaries and other incentives attached to it. So far so good, the government is doing well. So, the state of education is something to write home about, unlike what it used to be.

 

..but how about the current cry for the service of ‘brilliant teachers’ in rural communities?

 

In 2005, almost about 5000/6000 teachers were recruited by the then-governor, Senator Rasheed Adewolu Ladoja. They were posted to various local governments, in such a way that those who sat for the interview were also committed to writing their choice of local governments with the condition that “the moment you are posted to your choice local government you cannot leave until after some years” and they all agreed. To the best of my knowledge, these teachers were deployed equally in all 33 local governments in the state. I’m sure that a lot of them are still in their locations. One good thing about the whole issue is that the government is a continuum, up till now, the embargo has not been lifted. So, it has been practically difficult for any teacher to leave the rural area for the urban, especially those who are captured under that particular arrangement.

To the best of my knowledge, we have competent, capable, responsible, and committed teachers in almost all the local governments, but we must also identify the fact that for now, we have a  shortage of teachers in the primary schools, while we now have adequate teachers in the secondary schools. Thanks to the recruitment done by the government over a year ago, where a total of 5,000 teachers were recruited into secondary schools,s and apart from that over 1,000 teachers were redeployed from being non-teaching to teaching staff, raising the number to about 8,000 teachers being injected into the secondary schools. We can now sleep and close our eyes regarding having adequate teachers in secondary schools.

However, we have a shortage of teachers at the primary schools and we have mentioned this to the governor, who has also acknowledged the urgent need and is working towards addressing this. We believe this is part of his agenda in the new administration.



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Sarafa Alli
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