Shortage of Teachers in Rivers State,  NUT Chairman Calls for Increased Recruitment

Shortage of Teachers in Rivers State,  NUT Chairman Calls for Increased Recruitment

Collins Echikpu, the chairman of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) in Rivers State, has voiced concerns over a significant shortage of teachers in the state. During an interview with our reporters, Echikpu urged the government to increase the number of available teaching positions in the ongoing state Civil Service recruitment process.

 

In September, Clifford Walter, the chairman of the Civil Service Commission, announced that, out of the ten thousand applicants in the ongoing recruitment exercise, two thousand slots were allocated to the state post-primary school board. However, Echikpu argued that this allocation would not suffice to address the pressing shortage of teachers.

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Echikpu revealed that many villages in Rivers State have a scarcity of teachers in classrooms. He explained that even if one thousand slots were assigned to the Universal Basic Education (UBE) and the other one thousand to senior secondary schools, it would still fall short of meeting the demand in Port Harcourt, let alone in other local government areas within the state. He stressed that the shortage of teachers is pervasive and necessitates increased recruitment efforts.

 

The NUT state chairman also called on the Rivers State government to implement the law extending the retirement age of teachers by five years, noting that other states have already done so. Additionally, he urged the government to allocate funds to support head teachers and principals of public schools, emphasizing the importance of investing in education to achieve positive outcomes. Echikpu argued that motivated educators would be better equipped to enhance their teaching skills and effectively manage schools.

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While emphasizing the need for diligence and exemplary behavior among teachers, Echikpu encouraged them to serve as role models for their students, teaching with passion and molding character. He urged teachers to prioritize regular attendance at schools, emphasizing that they too were once students before embarking on their teaching careers.