Curricular activities in the 46 public Colleges of Education ended on Friday, August 20, 2021 after prospective Level 400 student teachers sat for their final papers to end the second semester of 2020/20201academic year. Prospective Level 200 and 300 student teachers ended the academic year earlier when they sat for their final papers before making way for their seniors to also write.
The academic year which commenced in January 2021 has not been a smooth one as Colleges of Education and its stakeholders had to adjust the academic calendar due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Management of the various Colleges of Education and student teachers have also been in dilemma over the past few months as a result of the non-payment of feeding grant and trainee teachers allowance to the student teachers.
Checks by the News Desk at the Colleges of Education indicate that most Colleges are currently putting plans in place to round up processes leading to the admission of new students into the Colleges. The application process ends on 31st August, 2021.
Though there are threats by some Principals not to admit new students as a result of the huge infrastructure deficit in their various Colleges, it is yet to be known how this challenge will be resolve.
Management of most Colleges are however making frantic efforts in using their Internally Generated Funds (IGF) to solve the infrastructure challenges to enable them admit new students in the coming weeks. Some of these Colleges include Asokore SDA College of Education – Koforidua, Bagabaga College of Education – Tamale, Dambai College of Education, Gambaga College of Education, Tamale College of Education among others.
Information available to the News Desk indicates that all attempts made by PRINCOF to meet the Minister for Education in person to seek possible solutions to the issue have proven futile. The Minister however engaged the leadership of PRINCOF in a Zoom Meeting on Tuesday, August 24, 2021.
One of the Principals who pleaded to speak on condition of anonymity stated that “it is quite difficult to understand why the Minister keeps turning down our request to meet him. There is disaster ahead of us if the challenges confronting the Colleges are not addressed head-on. I travelled all the way from my College just to get to the airport to pick a flight to Accra for a meeting with the Minister together with my colleague PRINCOF Executives. Upon reaching the airport, I was told the meeting has been called off. I cry for the future of the Colleges”.
In a related development, Level 400 student teachers as part of the four-year Bachelor of Education programme are expected to commence their Off-Campus Teaching Practice on Monday, September 6 to Friday, December 10, 2021. The Level 400 student teachers will be posted to the College’s STS partner schools and where necessary, non-partner schools with mentors and other support systems in place.
In all the student teachers will be supervised and scored nine (9) times. Five (5) of such supervisions will be carried out by their Mentors which constitute 30% and four (4) supervisions by External / College Supervisors make up the rest of the 70%.
The Level 400 student teachers are expected to take part in classroom teaching, co-curricular activities such as sports, games, debates, club meetings, drama, etc. As part of their engagement, they are to build good collaboration with school authorities, staff, colleagues and students/pupils and with community members.
Story by: Larry K. Agbador