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General News of Tuesday, 12 February 2019


Educationist calls for improvement in teacher training education

An educationist, Mr Anis Haffar, has called for an improvement in the quality of teacher training education in the country to keep teachers abreast of modern teaching trends which, according to him, was technologically driven.

He remarked that the only way the youth in the country could become technologically-minded was when teachers were trained to have a "digital mindset", adding that it would also bring about efficiency in the teaching of the STEM courses across the various levels of education in the country.

"If we want to develop our youngsters to be technologically savvy, then we need to pay attention to our teachers and how we are training them, because our teachers cannot give what they don't have, so the point I stress consistently is this, that, we have to embark on a massive drive to change the mindset of our teachers from an analogue mindset to a digital mindset", he explained.

Mr Haffar, who is also a member of the Ghana Education Service (GES) council, made the call when he interacted with the Daily Graphic during the opening of a two-day national capacity building conference, organised by the Baraka Policy Institute (BPI) for the Islamic Educational Unit of the GES at the Medina Institute of Science and Technology (MIST) in Accra, last Saturday.

Cognitive ability

He said the cognitive abilities of all children anywhere in the world were the same but that the difference between a Ghanaian child and a child from any of the developed countries was in the teaching approach and the systems to put in place to ensure that the pupils fully understood whatever they were being taught in the schools.

According to him, the driving force of industry, in the 21st century, was technology, and that the youth in Ghana could lose out, if the nation failed to develop them to become creative and innovative to participate in such an era, urging the country to assemble the finest of its brains to create a system that would make it easier for everyone to flourish.

Glued in the past

He further argued that the reason Africa was struggling to progress was because the continent was still, "glued in the past", making it difficult for its citizenry to be innovative.

"This is where the future of the country is, so we cannot be naive and pretend we can teach the 21st century child the same way we were brought up where you chew, pour, pass, you forget, you become poor and so on", he further explained.

The conference

The two-day National Capacity Building Conference was held under the auspices of the Baraka Policy Institute, an educational policy think tank, with a special focus on the Muslim Community, to bring all the key stakeholders under the Islamic Educational Unit (IEU) in synch with the vision and arrangement of the unit.

Themed: " Effective Partnership for Quality Education Delivery in Ghana: The Role of the Faith-Based Stakeholders", the conference deliberated on issues of, "effective leadership in education, and funding".


The Executive Director of BPI, Dr Haruna Zagoon, explained that the IEU was not well structured as compared to the other faith-based educational units under the GES which brought about many challenges to the IEU but that the BPI had helped to formulate a new constitution to empower the council and management of IEU at all levels to address the issue of "Ownership, Funding and Quality" of education within the Muslim communities.

The Minister of State at the office of the Vice President, Abu-bakar Boniface Saddique, who opened the conference, indicated that the government was committed to championing the cause of the IEU, pointing out that the Vice President, Mahamudu Bawumia, had in his speeches at various functions spoken about the government’s commitment to develop the Muslim communities in the country.