The Public Relations Officer of the Ministry of Education, Kwasi Kwarteng, has rejected claims that the panacea to dealing with challenges facing the teacher licensing regime in the country is to abolish the licensure examination.
According to him, “for quality and standardization purposes, many professions and agencies use license systems to select individuals into their respective fields.” He added that the most efficient module used in this process is examination, whether written or unwritten.
He stated that in the enlistment of personnel into any security services, one will need to meet certain standards/test before qualifying, explaining that the standard becomes even higher in the context of a teaching appointment where the prospective employee, as part of his job requirement, is to ensure the academic excellence of students through the imparting of knowledge and skills.
Mr Kwarteng in a statement explained that against the backdrop of many public and private institutions training teachers, there is the need for setting a common denominator in meeting the quality test, hence the teacher licensing regime.
“The license system validates the legal authorization of the mandate of the NTC in indicating that a teacher has met all the minimum standards (knowledge, skills, values and attitudes, competencies and experience) necessary to deliver effectively in schools and protect the public through the enforcement of standards that restricts practice to qualified individuals who have met specific qualifications in education,” he said.
“Suffice to say, the concept of the Professional Teacher License goes beyond standardization and quality purposes. It demonstrates the highest mark of professional accomplishment that makes the Ghanaian teacher a member of a larger network of accomplished educators shaping the teaching profession as well as human resources.
“At no point should the profession become the last resort for anyone who isn’t successful at his/her chosen career. Like in other fields, there must be that professional differentiator that sets our teachers at par with players in other disciplines/professions,” he added.
He further explained that in “view of the global standards and recognition we aspire for, this exam is a matter of necessity” saying “it cannot also be substituted with any other form of exam, for that matter an internal exam.”
“For instance, a school’s internal exam does not negate the relevance of exams like WASSCE within the context of ensuring proper educational standardization within the West African sub-region. Hence an effective teacher license system places a higher premium, value and integrity on Ghana’s education system thereby making our teachers and students globally competitive and recognizable,” he explained further.