GTU SG calls on gov’t to invest in teachers

Oct 6, 2021, 11:28 AM | Article By: Sulayman Waan

Marie Antoinette Corr, secretary general of The Gambia Teachers Union (GTU) has called on government to invest in teachers and give priority to them in education efforts to ensure every learner has access to a qualified and supported teacher.

In a statement read by Ousman K. Kebbeh, immediate past GTUCCU board director for Region 2, she said: “On World Teachers’ Day, we are not only celebrating every teacher. We are calling on the Government of The Gambia to invest in them and prioritise them in education recovery efforts so that every learner has access to a qualified and supported teacher.”

He added: “A successful education recovery calls for investment in more teachers and in training and professional development opportunities, so that educators may enrich their practice and gain the skills to integrate and use educational technologies effectively to support learning and adapt to a diversity of learners’ needs.”

Madam Corr further said there is a need for recognition of the exceptional role teachers play and empower them with trainings, professional development, support, and working conditions they need to showcase their talents.

“This is a time of challenge but also an opportunity for rapid transformation to address the unfulfilled needs which have been multiplied by the pandemic,” she declared.

The education official noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the   education system making many teachers face difficult working condition. “Teachers have been on the frontlines to ensure learning continuity when schools were closed and to provide socio-emotional support to their students, especially the most vulnerable ones.”

Lamin Fatajo, director of Region 2, described the WTD as important. He added that the way Gambia’s educational system is managed determines the future of the country.

“You are the heart of the education system. What I mean is the capacity building you doing for teachers and their utilisation is very important in shaping a future of a country,” Fatajo told teachers during the celebration.

He called on teachers to take World Teachers Day seriously and focus more on national development, saying engineers, technicians, managers, administrators among others are shaped by teachers.

He said if teachers continue shaping good professionals, no doubt the country will develop. However, failing to do so could be detrimental to the nation.

“Teachers are fundamental in making this country and future of this country depend on you,” he said.

Sutay N.B. Bah, chairman for GTU regional executive committee for Region 2, gave an overview of the World Teachers Day background information, saying WTD is held annually on 5th October as an important event for the entire educational community to celebrate the teaching profession and to promote the ILO/UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Higher Education Teaching Personnel (1997) Complemented by the ILO Policy Guidelines on the Promotion of Decent Work for Early Childhood Education Personnel (2014).