Dr Matthew Opoku-Prempeh, Minister of Education, has said teaching would no longer be an option for just anyone but professionals who have the requisite training.
He said calling one’s self a teacher must not be opened to just anyone but rather those who had undergone training, met the required standards and licensed to practice under a regulatory body.
He said the teacher in this modern time should function as a facilitator of learning rather than forcefully feeding information on the learner and framing it as knowledge transfer.
Dr Opoku-Prempeh said this in a speech delivered on his behalf by Professor Kwesi Yankah, Minister of State in Charge of Tertiary Education at the launch of the ‘Ghana Teacher Prize 2019’, on the theme ‘ Teacher: The Future of the Profession’ held in Accra on Wednesday.
“We hope to get to a time where the word ‘I am a Teacher’ will attract greater admiration and respect,” he said.
He noted that the government had introduced various reforms in teacher training and professionalisation of teaching to improve the teacher and the Educational sector in general, adding that, teachers must reposition themselves and adapt to the changing trends of teaching practice across the Globe.
The Minister said this was important even as the teacher training institutions had attracted much younger applicants who aspired to build a career to become teachers, adding that, we must work hard to not to only train them but to retain them through continuous development and descent working condition.
“They are truly the future of the profession, eager to learn and explore modern technologies, which they can easily tap to facilitate teaching and learning,” he said.
He said it was the moral responsibility of every professional or literate to honour and cherish teachers for their hard work over the years.
He commended the teachers for their effort and sacrifices and assured them that the government was feverishly working on their challenges and welfare concerns.
Professor Opoku Amankwah, Director General, Ghana Education Service and chair of the launch said this year’s event sought to set a standard with international bench marks aimed to restore the image of the profession and motivate the teacher towards high performance.
This he said it would also help retain qualified teachers and promote their overall effectiveness in the class through the exposition of international best practices.
He urged teachers to raise the bar by contesting for the International Teacher Prize Competition as well to bring Ghana on the Global front.
Mr Christian Addai-Poku, Executive Secretary (Ag), National Teaching Council, said that the event was scheduled for 5th October at Kwame Nkrumah University Science and Technology, Paa Joe Stadium in Kumasi and was opened to all teachers at the Pre-tertiary level.
Some of the prizes would be Ghana’s most outstanding Teacher to win a three bedroom self-contained house as first prize; First runner-up will win a 4×4 Pick up, Second Runner Up a saloon car.
Other prizes would be given to best Pre-school, Basic School, Junior High, Senior High, HIV advocacy and Special school teacher.
He said the District and the Regional awards had been stopped due to financial challenges but the NTC was working hard to hopefully bring it back in next 2020 edition.
Sponsors such as Prudential Bank presented a double cabin 4×4 Mitsubishi Pick-up with registration Number GS193-19, GLICO Pension also pledged a saloon car, Data Bank Pledged a Saloon Car, Star Oil also donated a cheque of Gh¢10,000, Ghana Commercial Bank gave a cheque of Gh¢20,000, UNI-JAY Limited Pledged 1000 printed T-shits.