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Accordingly, the National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE), the regulatory body in charge of colleges, has set June 2016 as deadline for all the colleges of education in Nigeria to release results of their students for the 2014/2015 academic session, as well as other backlog of results.
The Executive Secretary of the commission, Professor Monday Joshua, has also disclosed that NCCE has commenced nationwide accreditation of programmes run by all colleges of education, as part of efforts to strengthen the quality of teacher education in the country.
He spoke while addressing the Committee of Provosts of Colleges of Education in Nigeria at their 4th Annual National Conference and sendoff for the immediate past Executive Secretary of the commission, Professor M. Junaid.
Professor Joshua also reminded the provosts that the commission had set March 2016 as deadline for all the colleges to have their programmes accredited, and that no plea for extension would be entertained.
He noted that the nine-year basic education, which covers six years of primary education and three years of Junior Secondary Education, as well as the adoption of the Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE) as the minimum teaching qualification in Nigeria have placed enormous responsibilities on the colleges of education to prepare teachers for the Universal Basic Education.
He said: “If you are running programmes that are not accredited, you should not be comfortable as a provost. You should feel agitated and do everything to make yourself comfortable by inviting us and making your programmes available to be accredited.
“As I’m talking to you now, we are carrying out accreditation in two colleges. We are on and we are expecting that as we enter into New Year, every week we will be having up to three or four teams at different colleges of education doing accreditation.
“We have set March, 2016 as deadline for all colleges of education to have their programmes accredited. Our coming is to your own advantage, so that you know where you are and know the quality of programmes that you are running as well as know what next to do to be in line.”
The Chairman, Committee of Provosts, Dr. Ezeom Ignatus, in his remark called for proper funding of colleges of education in the country in order to produce quality teachers for teaching at the basic level of education.
Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari has been urged to make quality of education his first, second and third priorities of his administration if significant economic development is to be achieved in the country.
Former Provost, Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo, Professor Adeyemi Idowu, made the call in his keynote address at the conference.
He said the implementation of the UBE programme of the Federal Government would not succeed without paying adequate attention to the quality of teachers that would teach in primary and secondary schools.
Idowu, who quoted a report that indicated that 23 per cent of 400,000 teachers employed in the nation’s primary schools do not possess the Teachers’ Grade Two Certificate, said this is a sad development considering that the NCE is the minimum requirement for teaching in Nigeria.
He said: “This troubling revelation regarding the shortage of teachers and half-baked status of many of the teachers employed to teach in schools raise doubts about the success of UBE.
“It exposes the fact that the number and quality of teachers needed to successfully implement the UBE have not been attained by the government. If the standard of education is to improve and if UBE is to be enhanced, society must educate and motivate teachers to perform their duties.”
He also emphasised that for quality of UBE to thrive, there is the urgent need for colleges of education to intensify efforts at educating teachers to develop competences related to technological, pedagogical and curriculum content knowledge.
While calling on the federal and state governments to ensure proper funding of the education sector, Professor Idowu also called for review of basic education curriculum in order to expunge irrelevant contents and include new ones in line with global demands.
He maintained that no nation has ever had significant economic development without achieving a broad-based education for its population, and that developed countries have attained their present economic status mainly because of the quality of their human resources, which are results of quality education systems.