By Felix Khanoba
The Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN) says about 400,000 teachers and education practitioners have so far registered for its first edition of National Conference of Registered Teachers.
Registrar/Chief Executive of TRCN, Prof. Olusegun Josiah Ajiboye, made this known while addressing newsmen on Thursday in Abuja. He said the online conference scheduled for 26 and 27 January 2021, has its theme as “Teaching and Learning in the Context of COVID-19 and other Emergencies; Implication for Teachers’ Professional Development.” While saying COVID-19 dealt a major blow on the education system, the TRCN boss said the conference which will be declared open by Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, will chart an effective safe teaching system amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
He said : “COVID-19 brought with it a lot of challenges in the education system and all the other aspects of human lives in the country and globally as well. “1.6 billion children globally were not able to attend schools when we had the first lockdown and about 62 million teachers all around the globe were also affected.
“Now we are trying to navigate how to go back to school, how to reopen; safe reopening of schools and we believe strongly our teachers will need a lot of support and to be able to support their children in the pandemic and other emergencies.
“That is why at TRCN we conceptualise the idea of having a conference for the teachers whereby they will be taken through the nitty-gritty of the pedagogical knowledge and skills they will require to teach in pandemic situations and other emergencies.
“Presently close to 400,000 teachers and other educational practitioners all over Nigeria and even outside (the country) have so far registered for that conference.”
Prof. Ajiboye said the conference which is being organised with the support of UNESCO regional office in Abuja, will attract various resource persons including Ms. Folawe Omikunle of Teach for Nigeria, Prof Wale Olatukun, former winner of Maltina Teacher of the Year, among several others.
He said the conference will also ensure a community of practice for teachers, where ideas of various subjects are shared among subject teachers.
Speaking further, Prof. Ajiboye hailed the decision of the Federal Executive Council which approved the increase of teachers’ retirement age of teachers to 65 years.
He, however, warned that the approval which is expecting the National Assembly’s nod may not be automatic as unregistered teachers may not benefit from it. “After the 60 years of age, there will be another evaluation,” Prof. Ajiboye said.