EducationGhana| July 24| Consider the Language barrier when posting Teacher Trainees – TTAG to GES:
The president of the Teacher Trainees Association of Ghana (TTAG) Jonathan Dzunu has called on the Ghana Education Service (GES) to consider the language barrier when posting teacher trainees after their graduation from the College of Education.
The president made this revelation in a speech delivered at the 26th General Assembly of the Association held at the St Francis College of Education on July 22, 2022.
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He indicated that language has always been a barrier to most teachers in the basic schools in Ghana.
”Teachers from different ethnic groups with different local dialects are mostly posted by the
Ghana Education Service to communities where they cannot speak the language of the people in the community, making teachers finding it difficult to effectively deliver a lesson due to language barrier.” He said.
”At times, you find a teacher from the southern part of Ghana posted to the Northern part to teach primary schools. This is very precarious and the repercussion will be that most children at this level would not be able to understand the English language and this makes teaching and learning ineffective. This is something we as a country need to take seriously.” He said.
Literacy and Numeracy Crisis
The president said that Ghana was currently facing a national literacy and numeracy crisis.
”Based on the most current data available, only 26% of pupils who reach the sixth and final year of primary school are literate in English and only 11% are numerate. Evidence from limited-scale literacy intervention in Ghana demonstrates that literacy rates can be improved through the implementation of bilingual transitional literacy programs at the early levels of primary school.” He indicated.
”Meaning that children learn to read in their mother tongue (L1) and also learn to speak
”This has informed the development of National Literacy Acceleration Program (NALAP) which addresses the literacy crisis.” He added.
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Review of Mode of Postings
The president called on the GES to review the current mode of posting newly trained teachers anywhere in the country.
”We strongly believe that, this mode adopted by the GES will be detrimental to the future of basic education in our country, taking into consideration the historical antecedent that led to the implementation of the district sponsorships for teachers and the positive effect it has had on basic education in general over the years.” He said.
District Sponsorship Postings
Jonathan suggested, that the system where newly trained teachers seek sponsorship from the District Education Offices of their choice must be brought back to avert the problem of language barrier since the current system does not warrant newly trained teachers to choose their preferred regions and districts.
He said the Ghana Education Service should consider mother tongue (a first language) when posting teachers.
”As it is done in the health service, newly trained teachers should be made to select a region of their choice and if there are vacancies, he/she should be made to select their preferred district then the preferred school.” He said.
”If the government, GES for that matter is really committed to promoting quality teacher education in Ghana and basic education in general, then we challenge her not to remain intransigent.” He concluded.
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