INCLUSIVITY AND GENDER RESPONSIVENESS A RECIPE FOR IMPROVED EDUCATIONAL STANDARDS AND PERFORMANCE – PRINCIPAL NUSRAT JAHAN COLLEGE OF EDUCATION

Newly trained teachers have been charged to be dedicated to the teaching profession while ensuring inclusivity and gender responsiveness.

These character traits are expected to help arrest the falling educational and performance standards the country is bedeviled with and also encourage girls to stay in school.

The Principal of the Nusrat Jahan College of Education Hajia Asma-U Ismail speaking at the third graduation ceremony of the institution at Wa said the college remains the best choice for people in the three regions of the North and the Brong Ahafo region because of its legacy and continuous growth.

The Nusrat Jahan College of Education started as a private girls’ Mission school with less than 10 students in 1970.

The institution has grown to become a Diploma awarding College of Education.

The college also hopes to start awarding Bachelor’s Degrees in 2022 and is also one of the few institutions which admit visually impaired teacher trainees.

Hajia Asma-U explained that “being an integrated College, admitting both sighted and visually impaired teacher trainees and serving the three regions of the North, management saw it prudent to increase the intake of visually impaired teacher trainees while building technical ability of tutors to teach the visually impaired.”

This she said has been a success as their “initial target was to increase the in-take of teacher trainees by 50%, but with our exclusive outreach programmes in some selected Senior High Schools and public education campaigns, visually impaired teacher trainees admitted by NJA CoE (Nusrat Jahan College of Education) in 2017 shot up to 21 representing a 175% increase.”

The third graduation ceremony saw the conferment of Diploma in Basic Education Degrees to over two hundred students from the 2015/2016 and 2016/2017 batches.

The Principal of the Nusrat Jahan College of Education Hajia Asma-U Ismail was confident that the trained teachers would exhibit the skills and training given to them at the school to improve education across the country.

She explained that “every child has a champion. I have the conviction that you are teachers who will never give up on the children you teach; teachers who understand the power of connection and insist that students become the best they can possibly be.”

The Upper West Regional Minister Alhaji Alhassan Sulemana admitted that no country can develop without proper and sustainable education, thus government’s continuous interest in the sector saying “teachers constitute a very important element in achieving inclusive education and in fulfilling the Sustainable Development Goals set globally for all with regards to the livelihoods and the eradication of poverty in our societies.”

He added that “we need to increase and sustain the number of well-trained teachers in our society so as to transform the current state of our development as a nation. No nation as you are aware can achieve the level of accelerated development without sustainable education.”

He encouraged teachers to take up postings into the rural areas to ensure that education reaches all ends of the country.

The Ameer and Missionary in charge of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Mission, Maulvi Mohammed Bin Salih was insistent that the College though being a mission school was not for the winning of souls and converting people to the Islam religion.

He maintained that the educational institution was open to all regardless of the individual’s religious affiliation.

He was however, unhappy about the behavior of some students particularly Muslims students saying “I have no fear when it come to the Christian students, when you hear trouble most times, it is unfortunate for me to say this but it is our own Muslims brothers.”

He said troublesomeness is not a trait of the Islam religion therefore, the need for Muslim students to behave in a more dignified manner.

The best graduating student for the 2016/17 batch, Banabas Sabogu in his valedictory speech said the only way for them as teachers to be successful is to be diligent to their duties.

He received a brand new laptop and cash prize as his award.

Story by Mark Smith

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