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‘Minority’s call for suspension of Teacher licensure exams uninformed and backward’ – IFEST

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The Institute for Education Studies (IFEST), has kicked against the Minority in Parliament’s position that the teacher licensure exam is retrogressive.

According to a statement released on Thursday, [August 26, 2021], the Minority called for the suspension of the exam.

The Caucus argues that the licensure examination is “retrogressive and cannot bring out the best in the newly trained teacher.”

The Minority also believes that the mass failure is a “demotivating and demoralizing attempt to frustrate the teachers before they assume duty.”

“The position of the Minority is that the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service should as a matter of urgency suspend the conduct of any further Teacher Licensure Examination and rather review the curriculum for teacher education and make the licensure an integral part of the course programme as credit hours to be earned by students towards their certification,” portions of a statement signed by the Ranking Member of Education, Peter Nortsu-Kotoe said.

But IFEST in a press statement issued on Thursday, August 26, 2021, said according to an Independent study it conducted on the Ghana Teacher Licensure Examination in 2020, there is no need for the exam to be scrapped because teacher trainees have come to accept the licensing regime.

“IFEST equally expresses serious concerns on the pass rate for the examination over the years. IFEST’s independent study on the GTLE conducted in 2020 revealed that gradually teacher trainees have come to accept the licensing regime and hence scrapping it should not be an alternative.”

IFEST thus described the call by the Minority as “uninformed and retrogressive”.

“It is therefore intriguing the consistency of the minority that, the GTLE should be scrapped. This position was even captured in the NDC 2020 manifesto. We, however, feel that such a stance is highly uninformed and retrogressive.”

The first examination came off from September 10-12, 2018, and it covered essential teaching skills, numeracy (basic calculation), and literacy (verbal aptitude and essay writing).

The examination applies to all teachers who hold the Diploma in Basic Education (DBE), Bachelor of Education (B.Ed), or a post-graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) who want to be employed by the Ghana Education Service.

The examination has been criticized by some persons, including former President John Dramani Mahama, who has argued that an improvement in the quality of teaching and examinations at the Colleges of Education is more important than the licensure examination.

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