Professor Jophus Anamuah-Mensah, a former Vice Chancellor of the University of Education Winneba (UEW) has expressed worry about what he describes as a disconnection between research carried out in the education sector and the policy direction of the Education Ministry.
That, he said, was in spite of numerous educational policies developed over the years for the country and has therefore indicated the need for the connection to be created to further enhance the sector.
The Professor, currently the Director, Institute for Educational Research and Innovation Studies (IERIS) of the university was speaking on the topic, “Current trends in teacher education in Ghana,” at a seminar held at the university last Thursday.
The seminar was the first of a series of similar engagement to be held at the university to update stakeholders on relevant research conducted periodically by the university on topical educational issues in Ghana aimed at connecting with the Ministry of Education.
With over 200 stakeholders in education in attendance, the seminar also discussed blueprint of the structures put in place to provide the needed assistance for the transition of Colleges of Education (CoE) in the country into fully fledged tertiary institutions.
Prof. Anamuah-Mensah noted that in ensuring a smooth transformation of the CoEs, the university with support from the Transforming Teacher Education and learning (T-TEL) Project Fund, has put in place some appropriate programmes.
These included development of resources for continuous tutor professional development and weekly conduct of Continuous Professional Development (CPD) in each College and Teaching and Learning Advisor (TLA) to support tutors and other academic staff.
He said some challenges confronting the present effort of upgrading the COEs included the lack of clarity on the status of the Colleges of Education and the need for the legislative instruments for the Act establishing the Colleges.
He cited other challenges as a new salary scale which he said had not been agreed on yet, government’s failure to invest in Colleges of Education’s upgrade, freeze on new post and appointment and budget and salary controls remaining with the Ghana Education Service (GES).
Dr. Evelyn Oduro, Director of Teacher Education Division of GES, speaking on the Pre-Tertiary Teacher Professional Development and Management policy, said it was intended to provide the principles and standards for effective preparation of all pre-tertiary teachers.
That, she said, was in response to the changing needs of education in the country, adding that the policy framework was expected to guide all teacher education activity to produce teachers, committed to their own professional growth and quality teaching and learning.
However, she enumerated some challenges to include inadequate funding for sensitisation on the policy to all stakeholders and teacher unions not in agreement with the development of new career path.
In his welcome address, the Vice-Chancellor of the University, Professor Mawutor Avoke said the seminar was timely as the university was engaged in affiliating with the CoEs, adding that UEW was still committed to its mandate of showing leadership in that direction.
From Jonathan Donkor, Winneba.