7th October, 2011
The Acting Governor of Niger, Alhaji Ahmed Ibeto, has attributed the recent mass failure of the stateâ€™s students in external examinations to the unprofessional attitude of teachers in the state.
Ibeto made the observation during the celebration of this yearâ€™s World Teachers Day on Wednesday in Minna.
â€œThe level of our studentsâ€™ mass failure in examinations is a clear indication of the poor quality of teaching and learning in our schools,â€ he said.
Ibeto particularly urged primary and secondary school teachers to be more dedicated, resourceful and committed to their duties.
â€œI challenge you all to proffer solutions to this recurring embarrassing situation, as the government is ever prepared to welcome suggestions from the NUT on how to move our education system forward in Niger State,â€ he said.
Ibeto noted that the state government had provided land for the National Teachers Housing Scheme â€œwhich we are vigorously pursuing to actualiseâ€.
He assured the teachers that government would explore other opportunities to partner with the NUT in initiating laudable programmes for their development.
Earlier, the state NUT Chairman, Mr Adamu Paiko, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that teachers in the state were faced with some challenges, which included inadequate instructional materials and classrooms.
He appealed to the government to address these issues, saying that they would facilitate the efforts of the teachers to improve the process and quality of teaching and learning in the state.
Also, the Minister of Education, Prof. Ruqayyatu Rufaâ€™i, has reiterated the Federal Governmentâ€™s commitment to promoting teachersâ€™ education.
Rufaâ€™i gave the assurance in Abuja on Wednesday during the celebration of the 2011 World Teachersâ€™ Day.
She said that the training and re-training of teachers was part of the ministryâ€™s four-year Strategic Action Plan and acknowledged the efforts of the Federal Government and other stakeholders in promoting education in the country.
The minister noted that the teaching profession had more women than men, adding that the development informed the theme of this yearâ€™s World Teachersâ€™ Day â€” â€œTeachers for Gender Equalityâ€.
Rufaâ€™i commended the invaluable roles of teachers in providing relevant and appropriate education for children, young people and adults in the society.
Speaking, the NUT President, Mr Alogba Olukoya, said that the World Teachersâ€™ Day celebration was hinged on the need to salvage the teaching profession and reposition it to play pivotal roles in human development.
He recalled that ministers of education, under the aegis of UNESCO, resolved in October 1996 to consider the recommendations of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) concerning the status of the teaching profession.
Olukoya stressed that the recommendations prescribed acceptable standards for the profession and established a template for benchmarking teachersâ€™ welfare.
He called on the government to look at the welfare aspect of the recommendations which, he noted, had been abandoned for some time.
The union leader said that while the government had constantly been reviewing its education policies, the teachersâ€™ welfare had always been compromised in the process.
Also speaking, Mr Nyesom Wike, Minister of State for Education, said that the role of teachers in nation-building efforts could never be over-estimated.
He commended the teachers for remaining committed to their profession in spite of the numerous challenges.
UNESCO in 1994 initiated the World Teachersâ€™ Day celebration to recognise the appreciable roles of teachers in human development activities
Meanwhile, Mr Jonah Kataps, the NLC Chairman in Taraba, has said that the stateâ€™s education sector is in serious crisis.
The labour leader made the remark in a goodwill message to teachers during the celebration of the World Teachersâ€™ Day in Jalingo.