Former GIMPA rector Prof. Stephen Adei is questioning the competence of teachers in basic public schools across the country, and suggested they are all dismissed from service to save the educational sector from collapse.
He argued trained teachers in these schools have formed “a cabal” with their headteachers and practically do not teach their pupils during school hours, describing their conduct as “wickedness, evil”.
“Practically, [they] have nothing to say. There is no result. They don’t do their lesson notes. How can you be that wicked to our own children” he wondered.
Speaking on the topic Ghana Beyond Aid, Prof. Adei, who is the Dean of Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Ashesi University College, said such teachers “are destroying the future of this nation”.
He contended that poor performance of the teachers has in recent years been manifesting in the BECE results of their pupils, attributing that to “poor supervision at the basic level”.
He warned that if the situation is reversed, it is would soon cause 50 per cent decrease in the percentage of students who would qualify to enter tertiary institutions after completing their secondary education.
Untrained teachers doing better job
File: A teacher in a classroom
In Prof. Adei’s estimation, senior secondary school leavers who are mostly engaged to teach in private schools perform better than the trained teachers he said are “well-paid” by the state.“That is why I believe that today if you sack all the public teachers in the basic school, there will not be a deterioration in education and if anybody dares it, they should challenge me and I will show that secondary school failures can do a better job than them because they are not teaching”
“After three years, with the lowest qualifications in secondary school, they go to training colleges and when they finish they are paid more than graduate secondary school teachers,” Prof. Adei claimed.
Prof. Adei said he was not surprised at the public school teachers’ conduct claiming “most of them take their children to private schools where the teachers have never gone to any training college; they are secondary school failures and yet they deliver better quality education than our trained teachers”.
For him, the best way to solve the problem would be to sack all the teachers in public basic schools for them to apply again to be considered on merit, for the teaching job but in a more decentralized manner.
He explained that in that case, the headteachers should be mandated to hire and fire teachers they want based on their performance.
“Let me tell you, if today, in the unlikely possibility that all the teachers are sacked in the public schools, and then the government, without a pesewa extra, asked people to apply for head teachership and he gives the headteacher the mandate to recruit the teachers he wants, and fire them if they don’t perform,”
This, he said, could cause a drastic change that would bring performance to the basic education sector, saying “within six months, despite all the listed argument, you will see a total transformation.
But the General Secretary of the Ghana National Association of Teachers David Ofori Acheampong disagreed with Prof. Adei’s position, and blamed the situation on the lack of equipment in the schools.
“What scientific basis does he have? We are running away from the basic facts of the case”, Mr. Ofori Acheampong queried.
He said there are supervisors who are paid to do their job so if performing, they should be hold accountable and not the teachers.
He, however, admitted that some teachers are not doing what is expected of them.