Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum, the Minister of Education (MOE), has said the licensing of teachers was not to demean the profession but to make the work more attractive to meet global standards.
“The licensing and registration of teachers will enhance the profession for teachers to play their rightful roles in the socio-economic transformation of the country,” he stated.
The Minister said this on Friday at the launch of the “Ghana Teacher Licensing and Registration” exercise in Accra to commence a nationwide issuance of teacher licence and registration numbers for all in-service teachers in the country.
The exercise, organised by the National Teaching Council (NTC), in collaboration with the MOE and the Ghana Education Service (GES), will begin in the Greater Accra region at the circuit centres, Shai-Osudoku from Monday, May 17, 2021, and later extended to other regions.
Dr Adutwum said education in the country had gone through some reforms over the years to ensure quality standards, stressing that the current reform had seen the necessity to professionalise teaching to play its mandate effectively and efficiently.
The NTC is mandated by Education Regulators’ Body Act 2020 (ACT 1023) to improve the professional standing and status of teachers and to ensure licensing and registration of teachers in the country.
“It is, therefore, heart-warming that we have the NTC in place to ensure that teachers are professional in the discharge of their duties,” he said.
“As a teacher, I am proud to be here to talk about licensing of teachers. I called myself the ‘Teacher in-Chief’ because I think my job is to ensure that the profession improved to the highest standards.
“I want the country to know that the sacrifices made by teachers will never be in vain, we will continue to work with them and professionalized them so that they can do their job very well.
“Teaching is a great sacrifice, it is part of you, part of your soul, your mind, heart and you have a unique role to play in the shaping of the next generation of Ghanaians”, the Minister said.
He called for collaboration from teachers and all stakeholders to create an effective and robust educational system that could transform the socio-economic fortunes of the nation.
“The Ministry and the GES is setting up a special teacher’s portal for them to register their grievances on the platform. We will assign case managers who will handle the issues to make sure that the complaints are resolved.
“When they are resolved, there will be a dashboard for me to know that there was for instance a reduction of 20,000 complaints from Ashanti or other regions. I want to remove the impediments of teachers and improve their welfare issues to do their job well”, he said.
The Minister commended the NTC for the proactive role taken to streamline the teaching profession in ensuring orderliness in the system and called for the support of all stakeholders for its success.
Dr Christian Addai-Poku, the Registrar, NTC explained that, the exercise targeted two categories of teachers, qualified teachers who had successfully acquired the required training from a recognised teacher education institution before September 1, 2018, and that per the arrangements, those teachers were not supposed to pass Ghana Teacher Licensure Examination (GTLE).
Another group of qualified teachers is those who have passed the GTLE and completed their induction training.
The categories, Dr Addai-Poku said were expected to first register on the portal: tpg.ntc.gov.gh and avail themselves personally at the registration centre to be issued their licence.
He said the exercise would not only help NTC issue licence to teachers but also help build a credible database of teachers to properly inform decision-making.
The Registrar appealed to Directors, School Managers, and Teachers in both public and private practice, Unions and Service Providers to support the exercise and make it a success, stressing “we are grateful to the Unions for their cooperation throughout the tough negotiation processes.”
Professor Kwasi Opoku Amankwa, the Director-General, GES, encouraged teachers to take advantage of the opportunity to register, adding that the new Act would enable teachers to assume their full role as a professional organisation.
“As professionals, it is the expectation that the Act will ensure the quality of teaching and learning, employ qualified teachers who will abide by the code of ethics of the profession,” he said.
Dr Adutwum, Prof Amankwa, and other Senior Directors of NTC were taken through the registration processes and presented with their licence cards as professional teachers.