General News of Monday, 7 December 2015
The Minster of Education, Prof. Jane Naana Opoku-Agyeman has cautioned that the ministry will not accept half -witted teacher trainees into the various classrooms in the country.
She explained that allowing unintelligent teachers into the classrooms to teach pupils will be tantamount to academic disaster which will not augur well for the nation.
Prof. Opoku-Agyeman indicated that teacher trainees are trained to teach pupils on subjects presumably understood by them.
‘How can a teacher teach pupils to clearly understand what they are being taught in schools, when he himself does not understand that particular subject. If you fail a particular paper, how do you then teach the pupils that same subject,’ she asked.
The Minister of Education who was reacting to a demonstration by students of Wesley College of Education (WESCO) last Tuesday morning at Kumasi in the Ashanti Region, said demonstrating is not a means to solving academic problems.
‘It’s very important for us as the ministry and all stakeholders to produce quality teachers into the classrooms,’ she noted.
Similar demonstrations against school authorities have occurred in some colleges such as Mampong Technical College, Akrokeri Training College by students for mass failure in some compulsory subjects.
She emphasised that the College of Education which is under the University of Cape Coast (UCC) cannot promote students who fail in their examinations to the next level.
She maintained that it is not possible for the ministry to run the day to day activities of all the 40 colleges in the country, hence inauguration of councils to ensure that peace and order are restored.
‘If you have been admitted into the college and you fail examinations and you are giving the opportunity to re-sit and you are unable to pass the exams at the tertiary level, how do we promote the student to the next level. We have what we call minimum credit, if you do 15 credit hours and you do not pass one paper, we give you opportunity to re-sit, and you failed again, then you resort to demonstration,’ she said.
She urged teacher trainees to allow systems to work, ‘colleges of education is under the University of Cape Coast (UCC), they have a professional board, we need to give them the space to work, we need to respect their decisions’.
She observed that some of the students do not even read students’ handbook to check the rules governing the institution they have been admitted.
She said dismissals occur in various tertiary schools but students do not go on demonstration, advising the students to return to the classrooms.