Productive Teaching in Nigeria 2: Bad Efforts Towards Professionalizing Teaching as Bane

As discussed in the previous webisode that the Nigerian states government have a thing with saying and doing things to prove that their teachers are not competent and are not worthy of any agitation they stage (about benefits)—I assume this is the governments trying to justify why the teachers are the ones treated worst the most in the labour force. Apart from the governments trying to prove the incompetency of the teachers, private employers of teachers often complain about the teachers too, and the complaints range from the teachers’ ungrounded knowledge of their subject content, to lack of expertise and professional qualities. They also complain that teachers are mostly not capable of defending their educational qualifications by bringing to practice what they have been trained on in the course of undergoing the programme. This is so much said to cover up the real factors that would make a trained teacher not be able to deliver professionally; everyone wants to make the problem the teachers’ and not theirs.

Not many people address the fact that being placed on benefits/payments far below their qualifications and skills can make a teacher not be able to be professionals. National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS), NUT (National Union of Teachers), faculties and colleges of education always claim that they are trying to professionalize teaching, but these bodies are also the biggest debasers of who and what the teachers are—like it is possible to professionalize teaching without placing high values on teachers. Contrary to public opinion, the medical profession is not so valued because its practitioners are life savers, but because their unions and everyone in the profession are committed to making the profession and everyone in it look honourable; same thing applies to the legal profession. While other professions and the practitioners are being upheld and uplifted by all means by every union, stakeholders and individuals in the professions, teaching and teachers are being debased by their own unions, stakeholders and individuals.

Most private employers have in their schools teaching staff who do not have any qualification at all in Education than teachers who are trained specifically for such job. Faculties and colleges of education are giving out their teacher training programmes on cheap qualifications—this is one of the means where a lot of academically, financially, socially and behaviourally poor group of people are shuffled into the profession. This poor group of people gets trained by lecturers who are not truly committed to professionalizing teaching, and then they become products that governments and private employers would see as inferior, incompetent, and not deserving of the best work benefits. All these problems but the teachers are focused on as the problem, meanwhile the teachers are only outcome of a lot of failures happening in every part of the systems that made them teachers.

About Olusegun Peters

  • Olusegun Peters is a businessman, a politician and a scholar. He is passionate about impacting as many people as possible one person at a time. Read more about Olusegun here

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