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21 August 2017

Teaching license will benefit teachers, schools – Danquah Institute

The Danquah Institute says teachers should embrace the teaching license policy as it will add to best practices which will inure to the benefit of teachers and schools.

A press release signed by the Executive Director, Dr Kingsley Nyarkoh, Monday said, The policy when implemented will give legitimacy to teachers, enhance their competencies and capabilities, and make the profession a more disciplined one.

“It is our expectation that before the policy is fully rolled out, most of the implementation issues such as the mode of examination, licensing fees would have been properly examined, spelt out, and well defined,” the statement added. 

The Institute is encouraging the National Teaching Council (NTC) to strengthen its consultations with the stakeholders, as well as the general public to reach the needed consensus for the acceptance and implementation of this worthwhile policy. 

Read the statement below:

Teaching License will benefit Teachers

Teaching is a profession and has to abide by professional codes and standards. Licensure is a mark of every true profession. The professional teacher, apart from their academic certificate earned from their institution—whose courses might not be the same across other institutions, need in addition, a professional license—that is awarded based on meeting a defined criterion, mainly via the passing of a standardized examination within the profession. The Education Act (778) of 2008 established the National Teaching Council (NTC) that has been mandated to oversee the practice of teaching in the country, and to issue licenses to professional teachers.

This legislative provision seeks to give legal grounding to the teaching profession, and also enhances its reputation. Almost every profession in the country has a body that regulates the activities of her members, and also issues out licenses to them. For example, the General Legal Council, the Medical and Dentistry Council, the Nursing and Midwifery Council, the Ghana Psychological Council, among others are regulatory bodies within their respective disciplines. Thus, licencing of teachers will not be new, rather, it will add to existing best practices; and it will inure to the benefit of teachers and our schools. The policy when implemented will give legitimacy to teachers, enhance their competencies and capabilities, and make the profession a more disciplined one.

Successive governments and stakeholders within the education sector have always sought novel ways in improving the educational standards in the country. In doing so, recourse has always been to look at best practices that will help us cash in on identified and available opportunities. It will be erroneous and misleading to assume that licensing of teachers is the panacea to improving our school system; however, it will be a panacea, and its implementation must be encouraged without situating the debate only within the myriad of issues that confront the education sector. We need to dispassionately analyse the policy, and see how we can make it better to benefit our school system.

It is a truism that no single policy intervention will be the solution to our educational misfortunes; there are other factors that need to be addressed. However, that does not mean that we should not have to introduce new policies that can improve our educational system. We hope that instead of being quick to shoot down the policy because of the obvious known challenges that have bedevilled the sector over the years, we should rather look at its merits and demerits, and how we can leverage the merits to our benefit.

It is our expectation that before the policy is fully rolled out, most of the implementation issues such as the mode of examination, licencing fees would have been properly examined, spelt out, and well defined. We would also like to encourage the National Teaching Council to strengthen its consultations with the stakeholders, as well as the general public to reach the needed consensus for the acceptance and implementation of this worthwhile policy. The Ghana Education Service should also emphasize programs such as refresher courses, workshops, conferences all of which make teachers more capable and improve educational standards.

Signed

Dr. Kingsley Nyarko

(Executive Director)

 

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