Our schools are empty, Edo teachers cry out to Obaseki

Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State

Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State

By Jethro Ibileke

Teachers in Edo state have cried out to the state government that public schools are gradually becoming empty as a result of the falling standard of public schools.

Chairman of the state chapter of Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Comrade Bernard Gbenga Ajobiewe, made the observation on Thursday, in Benin, at an event organized to mark World Teachers Day, with the theme: “The Teachers We Need For The Education We Want”.

He charged the state Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, to urgently address the falling standard of education and the issue of acute shortage of teachers in the public primary schools in the state.

He said: ”Sir, we are appealing to you, our schools are empty, the pupils are not learning, learning is no longer effective.

“A situation whereby two or three teachers are teaching in the entire school, how do you expect effective teaching and learning to take place?”, Ajobiewe asked rhetorically.

According to him, the shortage of teachers in the primary schools is a result of resignation, retirement and death of teachers.

Ajobiewe said that the situation is worse in the rural areas where they have schools with as few as one or two teachers handling the entire classes.

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He therefore charged the government to do all it could to recruit quality teachers to fill the vacuum created by those circumstances.

The NUT chairman used the occasion to make some demands from the state government for Edo teachers.

“Other demands are payment of 2015 promotion arrears to affected teachers in Orhionmwon and Oredo local government areas of the state.

The demands are primary school head teacher appointment, the release of an approval letter for a harmonized retirement age for teachers, the donation of NUT operational bus and the building of a new Teachers’ House.

Responding to their request, the State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, said he is doing a lot in the primary schools.

He disclosed that the state government has trained 4,500 persons which it pays N40000 monthly to make up for the shortfall of teachers in the primary schools.

While assuring them that their demands would be met, Obaseki added that despite his huge investments in the educational sector in the state, he is prepared to do more.

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