Savelugu(N/R), May 31, GNA - Out of 748 teachers who applied for study leave with pay in the Northern Region this year, only 255 of them were granted based on the permitted quota allowed by the Ghana Education Service (GES).
Mrs Veronica Adzato Ntem, Deputy Northern Regional Director of Education announced this at the "Best Teachers Awards" in the Savelugu/Nanton District at Savelugu on Tuesday.
The event under the theme: "Charting a sustainable course for equitable education delivery - The role of the teacher", covered 2003-2005 academic years.
Mrs Ntem said study leave with pay was still highly competitive and advised teachers to attain the mandatory three years before they apply. She said in the case of study leave without pay, there was still some opportunities for teachers.
Mrs Ntem said out of 526 newly trained teachers posted to the region, Savelugu/Nanton District had 46, the assembly sponsored 35 while 11 were added from the general pool.
Last year the district had 91 of the trained teachers posted to the region being the largest. Mrs Ntem said the assembly had also been permitted to recruit 14 untrained teachers this year, while GES supported the assembly to recruit 35 untrained teachers last year. She assured the assembly that there was room for collaboration between GES and the assembly to improve upon teacher availability within the district.
The Deputy Regional Director of Education; urged the assembly and other stakeholders in education to support the newly posted teachers to contribute meaningfully to the growth of education in the region.
Madam Adriana Kandilige, Savelugu/Nanton District Director of Education said for the country to achieve a middle-income status by 2015, there was the need to extend education to all children "as a right and not as a privilege".
Madam Kandilige lauded the government's Capitation grant policy and said for the policy to succeed, "Teachers must be prepared to serve anywhere their services are needed and not where their comfort will be assured".
She commended the assembly, World Vision International and the Department for International Development (DFID) of UK for their immense support towards the awards.
Mr Abubakari Atori, Savelugu/Nanton District Chief Executive said; Government had instituted measures, including establishment of the Distance Learning and Untrained Teachers Diploma in Basic Education (UTDBE) programme, to improve upon the quality of education delivery in the country.
He said the assembly on its part had embarked on the provision of educational infrastructure and other facilities to enhance effective teaching and learning in schools.
Mr Atori said Government had made education a priority towards poverty reduction with the introduction of the grant and the NEPAD School Feeding programmes.
He said World Food Programme (WFP) and Catholic Relief Services (CRS) were contributing their quota towards improved education in the district and announced that WFP would soon open 11 more feeding centres in addition to the existing five in the district.
The DCE complained about indiscipline and moral decadence not only among the youth but teachers as well, saying: "As teachers, your professional function is crucial in any policy or programme..." Mr Adam Abdallah of Savelugu Experimental Primary School was adjudged the "Best Teacher" for 2005-2006 in the Primary category. In the Junior Secondary School (JSS) category, Miss Guonah Fouzia of Savelugu School for the Deaf emerged the best while at the Senior Secondary School (SSS) level, Mr Sufhan Abubakari Saddique and Mr Tia Thomas Tampull both of Savelugu SSS, took the first and second positions respectively.
Mr Ali Laari of Janjori-Kukuo JSS and Mr Ibrahim Iddrisu of Rawdatul Atfal JSS, took the fist and second positions in science and mathematics respectively.
In the non-teaching staff category, Mr Alhassan Mahama, Ibrahim Zakaria and Miss Ndigra Florence were given awards for their dedication to duty.
The award winners took home tabletop refrigerators, Disc Video Deck (DVD) cassette players, sound systems and packets of roofing sheets.