TRCN registers over 500,000 teachers in two years
The Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN) has said it carried out over 500,000 registrations between August of 2016 and 2018, in line with its mandate to ensure professionalization of teachers in the country.
Speaking at a Roundtable with Education Correspondents Association of Nigeria in Abuja, the Registrar and Chief Executive Officer of TRCN, Prof Josiah Ajiboye, said so far, over 2 million teachers across the country have been registered since the establishment of the council.
Ajiboye however noted that Nigeria still requires about 250,000 teachers annually because of the number of pupils in school, the country’s growing number of out-of-school children and to fill the vacancies of those leaving the profession.
“Globally, there is a shortfall of over 17 million teachers but a large number of that deficit is from sub-Saharan Africa with 7 million shortage of teachers.
“In Nigeria, so many teachers have left the service and new ones are not recruited to fill in the gap, contrary to what obtains in other climes. Given the number of pupils in Nigeria school and its growing number of out-of-school children, to do a replacement, we need 250, 000 teachers annually,” he said.
The TRCN boss further stated that teachers were leaving the profession for different reasons as some, especially in the north east were leaving because they were traumatised by insurgency.
He said the December 2019 deadline approved by the National Council on Education (NCE) which took place in Kano, declaring that anyone who fails to register with TRCN will be removed from the teaching profession was still sacrosanct.
“By January 2020, we will commence enforcement of the deadline; we have started carrying out our census and we already have the database from 6 states, one from each from the six geopolitical zones,” he said.
Ajiboye added that the states include: Nasarawa from North Central, Ogun from south west, Ebonyi from South East, Cross River from south-south, Jgawa from North West and Bauchi from North East.
On private schools involvement, he said the TRCN mandate covers both public and private school teachers, adding that the teachers qualifying exams was postponed twice on the request of private schools.
He disclosed that the council has created a private school desk manned by a deputy director to interface and attend to matters arising private schools, stating that quality cannot be sacrificed on the altar of profit.
He said TRCN and the National Teachers Institute (NTI) were working harmoniously to ensure that the quality of teachers was improved.
“We have been trying to review our professional standards for Nigerian teachers and have been talking with UBEC to fund the project,” he said.
According to him, the challenge with TRCN as a critical agency is funding, stressing that Nigeria needs quality teachers to develop and if TRCN as a regulatory agency is not funded, such development cannot be realised.