Founder of Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti, (ABUAD), Chief Afe Babalola (SAN), yesterday, lamented low standard of education in the country, saying it is high time the federal government reintroduced the Teacher Training School to salvage the situation.
The institutions, reputed to be awarding Grade-Two certificates to intending classroom teachers were scrapped by the government many years ago.
The legal luminary said Nigerian graduates may continue to be unemployable if such control mechanism is not adopted. The former Pro-Chancellor and Chairman governing Council of the University of Lagos spoke while declaring open a Workshop on Teaching and Learning Methods In Higher Educational Institutions holding at the private university in Ado Ekiti.
Babalola posited that a return of such teachers’ training institution had become imperative in view of the growing academic decay in Nigerian schools.
Such institution, according to him, must be made compulsory for whoever intends to take up teaching profession, regardless of whatever initial qualification such a person may have acquired. Lamenting the current poor state of all levels of education in the country, the eminent lawyer said urgent action must be taken to salvage the situation before it got out of hands.
Babalola said aside from primary and secondary education which is currently suffering most from the poor background of most teachers, such is also taking its toll on tertiary institutions.
He said all persons already teaching or aspiring to teach in any tertiary institution must henceforth be made to undergo at least, basic teaching programme before they are engaged as being done in England where what is referred to as “Qualified Teachers Status”, (QTS) must be first obtained.
“ The state of education in Nigeria ttoday is no doubt deplorable and highly undesirable at all levels, tertiary education in particular has become a mere formal process for obtaining higher certificates withouting imparting on the substance for which the institutions are established.
“ Some of the problems are traced to poor teaching and learning methods among others. A very critical area which has hitherto been neglected is that of quality teaching methods
“Teaching, an otherwise important calling has become the last choice of those who could not get jobs elsewhere, it has thus become something for every Tom, Dick and Harry.
“It is unfortunate that the common assumption today is that a student who graduates with a First Class or Second Class(Upper Division) Degree is eminently qualified to teach because of the degrees, especially if he had a Masters or Doctoral degrees to it
“ This is however far from the truth. It is one thing to obtain university degree and yet another thing to be able to impart knowledge to another person in a way he or she can understand the process” ,he said.
Earlier, the Vice-Chancellor of the institution, Professor Michael Ajisafe, in his welcome address said founder of ABUAD, Afe Babalola conceived the idea of training and re-training for the university staff to be able to effectively cope with modern trend in teaching.
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