The Deputy Ranking Member on Parliament’s Education Committee, Dr. Clement Apaak, has clarified that former President John Dramani Mahama is not opposed to the licensing of teachers but to the writing of the teacher licensure exams.
During his ‘Building Ghana Tour’ in the Bono Region, Mahama vowed to abolish the licensure exams, arguing that subjecting teacher trainees to an additional assessment for qualification was unnecessary.
However, his promise has been strongly criticized by various associations, including the Colleges of Education Teachers Association of Ghana (CETAG), which maintain the importance of the exams.
In an interview with Umaru Sanda Amadu on Eyewitness News on Citi FM on Monday, Dr. Apaak said, “John Dramani Mahama is not opposed to licensing teachers; he is not opposed to teachers being professionals, and he is not opposed to adopting and following best practices. But we are opposed to the current practices, which is the decision not actually backed by the Teaching Act, that for one to be certified as a professional teacher and licensed, one has to write a licensure exam.”
“So it is important to distinguish and delineate between licensing teachers as professionals and saying that teachers must write an exam called a licensure exam, pass, and on the basis of that be given a license.”
Similarly, the Communications Officer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Sammy Gyamfi, has asserted that the exams were a ploy by the current administration to suppress teacher recruitment.
Mahama had explained thatteacher trainees already undergo rigorous four-year Bachelor of Education programs, encompassing at least 50 courses and eight semesters of intensive study and rigorous assessment via exams.
He, therefore, questioned the need for an additional exam after such comprehensive training.