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20.02.2009 Education

'Give Teachers Better Salaries'

By Daily Guide
'Give Teachers Better Salaries'

Award winner, Mrs Appiah A FORMER VICE-Chancellor of the University of Cape Coast and current principal of Methodist University College, Prof Samuel K. Adjepong has spoken about the need for teachers to be highly motivated to ensure that the best materials are retained in the classrooms for effective teaching and learning.

He said lack of appropriate incentives allow the most conscientious and capable teachers lose their enthusiasm for teaching and abandon the classroom for more lucrative opportunities elsewhere.

He however indicated that the best way of promoting quality teacher delivery is to implement an effective performance-based salary scheme for teachers in which teachers would be rewarded for better performance as against a simplistic seniority-based scheme.

According to him, the performance-based salary scheme should be structured in a way that the criteria for measuring teacher quality would create the right set of incentives for teachers.

Prof Adjepong was speaking at the Fourth Speech and Prize-Giving day of Koforidua Senior High School (KOSEC) at Koforidua over the weekend.

The theme for the event was “Rising Above Our Challenges In The Quest For Educational Excellence”.

Prof Adjepong suggested that evaluation of teacher performance should include classroom observation by independent experts, interviews with the teacher, assessment of separate questionnaires completed by pupils/students and headteachers/principals in addition to the academic performance of his pupils/students.

He stressed that the current regional and national award schemes do not penetrate the fabric of the teaching profession deep enough and that there was the need for a more domesticated or decentralised scheme which is transparent and comprehensive to allow every teacher to compete.

“Rewards for high performance should not be restricted to salary alone but should include increased professional responsibility and financial assistance for further studies”.

Prof Adjepong said to survive in the competitive educational environment, school authorities must take discipline and effective school administration very seriously.

The guest speaker commended the headmistress of the school, Mrs Matilda Regina Appiah for bringing a lot of innovations to the school to make it one of the good schools in the country within its relatively short span of life.

The headmistress, in her speech, said when she took over as the head of the school, the school's infrastructure was in a raw state but by dint of hard work and the collaboration of staff and parents, she has been able to raise the status of the school with standardised infrastructure and impressive academic performance.

“Today, KOSEC has an ICT centre, a dining hall, staff room and a wall round the school,” she noted.

She indicated that with a crop of young and dedicated graduate staff, the school will continue to emphasise high academic performance and develop the innate talents of students and skills for future employment.

Mrs Appiah praised the Omanhene of New Juaben Traditional Area, Prof (Emeritus) Daasebre Oti Boateng for his contribution to the growth of the school as well as the GETFund for providing the school with a bus, a pick-up and a 12-unit classroom block.

Prof Oti Boateng, who was the chairman for the occasion, supported Prof Adjepong's call to institute a performance-based salary for teachers to ensure effective teaching.

He promised to build a new internet cafe for the school and furnish it with 10 modern computers to provide students with more access to ICT.

From Thomas Fosu Jnr, Koforidua