I guess I have to add my voice to the call. Over the years, efforts have been made to transform teacher education to align with the changing educational demands and improve learning outcomes at the basic schools.
Teacher Training Colleges now colleges of education are institutions established to meet the teacher demands at the basic level and have since been undergoing constant reforms and upgrades in other to train quality teachers with the requisite skills and knowledge to meet the current trends.
These institutions used to offer Three Years Post-Secondary Teacher Certificate ‘A’. But as time progresses, it became necessary to review it to catch up new minimum requirement of teachers 1996(Diploma) and educational needs at that time.
In September 2004, under the leadership of the then Minister For Education Youth And Sports, Hon kwodzo baah wiredu, The Three Years In-In-Out Diploma In Basic Education was rolled out. The first batch graduated in 2007.
Then Again, Just recently, in August 2018, under the leadership of Matthew Opoku Prempeh, Colleges of Education have seen yet another upgrade, now achieving the aim of reaching the full tertiary status conceived back in 2001 and now offer Four Years Bachelor’s Degree in basic education program. The first bath would be graduating in 2022.
Now to the main issue.
- When the Diploma Teachers hit the classroom, their certificates carry higher weight than their seniors except for those who went for further studies.
- From the word go, the diploma teachers are placed on higher ranks (SS II) and enjoy higher salaries than their seniors except for those who were upgraded due to long service.
- Modified ways of teaching and new ways of writing lessons notes and doing other related stuffs that were inherent in the diploma program has brought about intellectual conflicts between junior teachers and their senior countaparts.
- It doesn’t seem fair and also serves as a theater for jealousy, low self esteem, insubordination, and inferiority complex amongst teachers.
Come 2022, the new Bachelor’s degree teachers would start tripling into the basic schools that are flooded with diploma holders and same situation is going to replicate. And from all indications, this won’t create a conducive working atmosphere.
To avert this and bring every teacher to the same page, there is the need for government to as a matter of necessity bridge this gap by implementing a mandatory one year topup for the diploma teachers to also acquire the new minimum degree requirement, new skills needed for the new curriculum and the self-esteem.
Capacity building of preparedness tertiary teachers in the right direction is key to improving learning outcome in the basic school.
Hon, Jerry Akporhor- Ag Secretary, Educate Ghana Summit.