By: Josmat Jerry
A system which sets and rolls out strategies that surpass its current running credibility is more of ‘beating its own legs’ with same yardstick. Before any policy, regulation or amendment is enacted, there is a need for thorough check, whether it’s necessary or not.
It is no news anymore that the Ministry of Education pegs ‘second class upper’ as minimum requirement for employability as a professional teacher, and such must also have the TRCN certificate (Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria). Considering this latest development in education, one must clearly note that such will actualize with variables of pros and cons whether it is of relevance or necessary to the current state of education and the country as a whole.
Having a mind of educational intelligence impacting knowledge to young ones is importantly required. Being a teacher calls for high quality as the ability of the teacher to transmit knowledge to pupils/students is a major determinant on how effective the young ones will learn. Pegging the minimum requirement as of 2.1 is reasonable to a certain point as it will help in producing ‘brainiacs’ of like minds. But with this benchmark, isn’t the Federal Government restricting the ability to be of qualified as a teacher on certificate only, thereby rubbing off what the brain actually beholds?
Of this current century, it is being said that the nation have only been producing ‘unemployable graduates’ whereby most of graduates who are Second Class (2.1) or First Class are just mainly theoretical and not practical. This means they are only certificate qualified but not intellectually qualified. Is the Ministry trying to pass a message that folks with 2.2 (Second Class Lower) or thereabout aren’t qualified to impact knowledge? It is high time ‘they’ reason and realise the fact that certificate is ‘just a paper’ while putting what’s in brain to work is a measurable qualification.
The well known ‘sex for grade’ malpractice activities, which has been put to sword to a reasonable length, may re-surface again due to this benchmark qualification. Students may start seeing this as a sure pass for them in getting employed which they will want to use all possible ideas to getting that result. With the stylish way of students, they will want to get that desired ends through all possible ways which can breed a rise in trend of examination malpractices which also connotes the sex for grade boosting.
As to the other side of the coin, there may be a rise in the manner students tend to be dedicating and serious with their studies. Having in mind that graduating with at least 2.1 will be of qualified as an employable teacher is enough to inject the passion to study hard and come out flying in colours. While it is an energetic tone to some in putting more effort towards their studies, it’s also an opportunity to others in being of hardwork towards any dubious form of malpractices they know in getting their own end result.
However, if they (Ministry of Education and Federal Government) are going to be adamant on this new development, there is need to proof to us all some acts of seriousness by setting same benchmark (in order to be of employable) across all the ministries and sectors the country has. With this, we will be pleased and assured that the matter had been ‘level-scored’. This development also depicts that current teachers who meet not the requirement would be asked to leave which will later on lead to a rise in unemployment rate and further cause an economic depression.
Also, considerably, the Federal Government is actually telling us that all graduates who meet the minimum requirement and are interested in venturing into the teaching profession as a career and likewise possess the TRCN certificate would all be employed? If Yes, it’s a welcome development which will help to uplift the standard of living to a certain level and lessen the burden of unemployment, if No, then the Federal Government needs to and MUST create sustainable employment capacity for its qualified benchmark employable graduates.
Well, before the Federal Government through the Ministry of Education can roll out such policy, they must have created a well laid out plan to make this work out well and employ the qualified professional teachers, wouldn’t they?