Colleges of Education Principals speak for students

The Principals of Colleges of Education (PRINCOF) says the daily feeding cost of GHS10.00 per student is woefully inadequate and must be increased to at least GHS30.00 per student, per day’.

Apart from the insufficient amount, Professor Samuel Awinkene Atintono, the President of the PRINCOF, said, ‘It usually takes a longtime before payment is made,’ and that often-posed challenges to smooth administration of the Colleges.

The PRINCOF President, who is the Principal of the Accra College of Education, spoke for teacher trainees when he addressed the Annual National Conference of the PRINCOF in Bolgatanga on the theme: ‘Repositioning Colleges of Education as Centres of excellence for teacher education in Ghana.’

The well-attended Conference, chaired by the Tongraan, Naab Kugbilsong Nanlebegtang, Paramount Chief of the Talensi Traditional Area, attracted Principals of the 46-member Colleges of Education across the country, stakeholders, and experts in education.

The Conference offered the platform for the s
takeholders to dialogue on key educational policies and best practices for teacher education in the Colleges of Education in Ghana.

Though Professor Atintono thanked the government for the teacher trainee allowances, he said the allowances were not paid on time, and further appealed to government on behalf of the students for regular payment.

On the issue of teacher trainee pass mark for licensure examination, the PRINCOF President said ‘The intention to raise the pass mark from 50 per cent to 70 per cent is very worrying for the teacher trainees, and this must be reconsidered.

‘The teacher trainees are actually not in support of the raising of the mark. I think we need further discussion around that,’ Professor Atintono added.

He emphasized that ‘The licensure exams introduced as part of teacher professionalism, is a very good move as it seeks to position teachers as professionals and make them meet global teacher standards.’

The Professor noted that there were, however, issues with the examination whic
h needed to be addressed, and called for assessment into the reason for mass failures among the newly trained teachers.

Madam Gifty Twum-Ampofo, the Deputy Minister for Education in charge of Technical, Vocational Education and Training (TVET), said the Colleges of Education played pivotal roles in shaping the future of education and the nation.

‘Our Colleges of Education stand as a bedrock of our educational systems, nurturing and modelling the minds of our future leaders,’ she said, and commended the ‘tireless efforts’ of the PRINCOF in its quest to equip teachers with skills and knowledge.

The Deputy Minister, who is the Member of Parliament for the Abuakwa North Constituency, said the Ministry aspired to transform the Colleges into positions of innovation, creativity, and centres of academic excellence.

‘To achieve this vision, we must embrace the transformative approach that integrates modern pedagogical practices, technological advancement and commitment to continuous improvement,’ she said.

Twum-Ampofo noted that the evolution of teacher education demanded that they equipped educators with the tools to navigate the ever-changing educational system, and said it was incumbent upon stakeholders to cultivate environmental conditions to encourage research, critical thinking, and collaboration.

‘Let us harness the potential of our colleges to become part of ground-breaking research and scholarships. Let us prioritize the holistic development of our teachers, emphasizing not only academic prowess, but also the motivation of character, empathy, resilience and many more,’ she said.

The Deputy Minister said a well-rounded educator did not only impart knowledge, but also inspired and guided students to become responsible citizens.

She thanked the PRINCOF for its continuous contribution to education in Ghana and expressed confidence that with the support and leadership of PRINCOF, the Colleges of Education would become the driving force behind transformative change in the country’s educational landscape.

Source: Ghana News Agency