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Teachers Recruitment: Oyetola expresses commitment to bridge inherited staffing gaps, produce globally-competitive students

Razaq Bamidele

Governor Isiaka Adegboyega Oyetola of Osun State has said his administration’s desire to recruit more teachers was aimed at bridging inherited staffing gaps and produce globally-competitive students who will be assets to the state’s sustainable educational development goals.

He said the state was pleased under his watch to recruit the brightest of the best and deploy them to primary and secondary schools across the state to give the children quality education with the ultimate objective of building a solid foundation for the transformation of the sectors and the state.

Governor Oyetola made the remarks while declaring open, the pre-engagement training programme for the newly-recruited 1, 000 Osun teachers, at Ataoja School of Science, Osogbo.

The event was organised by the Ministry of Education which aimed at training the new teachers and integrate them into the tradition of teaching and educational excellence.

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While noting that his Administration has given education the prime place as the driver of its Development Agenda and the tool for achieving sustainable development, the Governor disclosed that workable strategies have been put in place to achieve the laudable objectives.

However, the leadership of the teachers in the state, has praised the Governor for prioritising education sector and making it the driving-force to enhance socioeconomic and infrastructural developments of the state.

Governor Oyetola further reminded that his Administration has been providing adequate, affordable, quality, equitable, well-rounded and functional education for the students to enable them to contribute their quota to the development of the State and to earn their place in the world’s education space.

Describing education as a primary sustainable tool to achieve the desired all-round growth and development, he said his administration would stop at nothing to realise the worthy objective of making excellence the common denominator of all sectors.

While itemising some of the modest achievements recorded by the Administration in the education sector in the last three years, the governor said progressive improvement has been made for students in the West African Secondary School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).

He expressed the delights that, the State had recorded progressive improvement and upped the performance from what it met in 2018 from 46.30 per cent credit pass in five subjects including Mathematics and English to 59.35 per cent in 2019 and 59.68 per cent in 2020, despite the challenges of the Covid-19 lockdown.

Governor Oyetola stated that his government has been working hard to train and re-train the teachers to be the best that they can be just as efforts are being made to ensure adequate renovation of school buildings and provision of educational materials for the students across the state.

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The governor, who congratulated the newly-recruited teachers on coming into the fold of well-trained and hard-working teachers in the state implored them to bring conventional requirements of diligence, discipline, hard work and commitment to bear on their job, urging them to be ready to tap on their creativity and innovation.

Governor Oyetola spoke further thus, “In line with our desire to achieve zero tolerance for indiscipline, including truancy, bullying, drug abuse and cultism, we have put stringent measures in place to ensure discipline and good school attendance.

“Our public school students are the proof of the quality of the education we provide in Osun. They have proved their mettle in Universal Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME) and have also won national awards.

“The above-mentioned policies, measures and milestones are the platforms we are welcoming you into as deliberate efforts at further improving the performances of our students and transforming our educational climate. We look forward to your contributions to building our educational edifice.

“Our dear newly-recruited teachers, you are coming into the teaching profession at a most challenging time: a time when our Administration has raised the bar of education; at a time our students have won national laurels and have proved to the nation that our public schools can compete with the best within and outside the nation; at a time the New Normal thrown up by the Covid-19 pandemic expects teachers to look beyond what they learned in their respective institutions.

“Consequently, these extant realities put a lot of responsibilities on you in terms of content and methodology so that you can meet up with the realities of contemporary times and expectations.

“In order to be relevant and to meet expectations, you will not only bring conventional requirements of diligence, discipline, hard work and commitment into your job, you will also have to tap on your creativity and innovations.

“Attaining success begins from drawing from and applying the kernels and lessons of this training, which has been organised to hone your skills, integrate you into the contemporary teaching environment and sharpen your competencies to enable you to contribute your best and produce competitive players in the knowledge and technology-driven century and the post-Covid-19 virtual teaching era.

“I urge you to give this training your best shot and draw relevant lessons from the new skills and competencies that will make you stand out among your peers and become 21st Century- and New Normal-compliant teachers”, he added.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Education, Mr. Jamiu Olawumi, commended the Governor for the rare opportunity created for the young graduates to secure employment in the State, admitting that the gesture was most appreciative and rewarding.

Olawumi, who explained the rationale behind the employment of new hands into teaching profession in the State Civil Service, believed that with the recruitment of 1000 as first phase, the teaching fortune in the state would experience drastic improvement, calling on the new teachers to put in their best and support the vision of the State to which their recruitment was made.

His words, “As you can see, we have assembled very good and proficient teachers to be who have done well in areas of  Mathematics, English, Chemistry, Physics, Biology and Agriculture Science.”

Others who made remarks on the occasion were; Chairman House Committee on Education, Hon. Babatunde Ibirogba; Head of Service, Dr. Festus Olowogboyega Oyebade; State Chairman, Nigeria Union of Teachers, Comrade Kabiru Adekomi; State President, All Nigeria Confederation of Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCOPPS), Mr. Emmanuel Ijaodola; Permanent Secretary, State Universal Basic Education Board, Mr. Adeoye Barake and a representative of Tutor General, Mr. Adelani Aderinola. They all commended the State Government for turning around the fortune of the education sector in the State as manifested in the myriad achievements recorded since assumption of office in 2018.