Sokoto state requires additional 9000 teachers to meet the global standard of 1:40 teacher-pupil ratio in its classrooms at the primary school level, a government committee set up by Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, has found out.
In addition, 11,863 more primary school classrooms are required to decongest the existing ones in order to create a conducive atmosphere for learning.
Presenting an interim report to the Governor in Sokoto, chairman of the technical committee on state of emergency in education in the state, Professor Risqua Arabu Shehu, said with a total number 1,193,760 pupils enrolled at basic education level for the 2015/2016 academic session, the teacher-pupil/student ratio in Sokoto presently stands at 1:66.
According to the report, even though there is fairly a large percentage of teachers with high qualifications in primary schools, over 60% of them do not process the required certification to teach at basic education level, while about 60% of teachers in junior secondary schools are teaching in urban areas, leaving rural areas under staffed.
It added that there exist more teachers in arts and social sciences than sciences, English and Mathematics.
“Not more than 5% have recommended Computer Studies and Technical Trade textbooks. Again, only 11% of the students have relevant textbooks in Mathematics while less than 15% of them have mathematical items such as graph boards, protractors, compasses and geometrical materials (solid figures). Out of the 39 technical/commercial trades identified by the Federal Government as contained in the 2013 NPE, only 9 are being offered in the State’s Senior Secondary Schools,” the committee lamented.
As a way out of the problem, the committee urged the government to embark on recruitment of more teachers, with more emphasis on female teachers who will serve as role models, especially in rural areas. This, according to the committee, will encourage girl child education.
For the 2015/2016 academic session, it recommended the recruitment of 800 female teachers, followed by 1,200 in the 2016/2017 academic session while 1500 should be recruited in the 2017/2018 academic session.
It also urged the government to embark on massive computer literacy programme for all SS3 students before they sit for the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) examination in April 2017.
In his remarks, Governor Tambuwal said the need to revive the education sector necessitated the setting up of the committee, and everything possible will be done to revert the negative trend.
“We are not shying away from the problem. That is why we are highting them with a view to bringing together all stakeholders to find a lasting solution. Yes we have huge problem in this sector, and we are determined to overcome them within a reasonable timeframe,” he added.
While urging the committee to expedite action on the full report and have it submitted to government on schedule, Tambuwal said the interim report will be studied and implemented as soon as possible.