By Dennis Agbo
Retiring permanent Secretary in Enugu State Ministry of Education, Dr Nwnneka Onah has disclosed that the congested public school classrooms in the state will soon be a thing of the past following the infrastructure being put in place by both the state’s Post Primary Schools Management Board, PPSMB, and the Universal Basic Education Board, ENSUBEB.
She also attested to the quality of teachers in the state’s payroll, noting that the ministry goes further to engage experts who retrain the teachers on a continuous basis.
Onah however said that the case of lack of teachers in some schools was majorly due to paucity of fund, which hinders employment in some cases, noting however that the state government had engaged in the recruitment of teachers since 2018.
She made the remarks, during a send-forth party organised by the ministry to bid farewell to the retiring permanent Secretary, other directors of the ministry and the immediate past Chairman of PPSMB, Mr Nestor Ezeme.
According to Onah: “Structures are being constructed because we’re aware that classrooms are not enough, in some schools anyway, not all because some have more than enough. It depends on the location of the school like in a densely populated area. But the government is doing a lot, when you move around our schools you will see a lot of blocks to take care of overpopulation in some schools.
“The job of the ministry is to tell the powers that be that this is the situation and recruitment of teachers have been ongoing, but then for funds, because you cannot recruit somebody and cannot pay, so the government is taking it to beat by beat to fill the gaps in lack of teachers.
“The quality of our teachers is good, yet out of the number being recruited, we go for the best. In the process of recruitment, we give them an aptitude test to get the best out of the qualified. From time to time, we engage experts who retrain the teachers that teach them the best practices.
“Education like other systems is growing and some practices may go obsolete and imbibe new ones to help people demonstrate better in terms of teaching and learning. Now teachers are encouraged to update themselves using the internet to find out what is current.”
The commissioner for Education, Prof Uche Eze charged the staff to always act professionally to demonstrate their training as teachers, noting that the ministry will miss the services of the retirees whom he said helped in no small measures in the successes recorded by the ministry.