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Educationalists task Govt on continuous training of teachers

Jonathan Kamwana, commissioner Teacher Education, Training & Development giving his welcome remarks during the 4th Teacher Education Symposium. COURTESY PHOTO

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Experts in the education sector have tasked the government with continuous training for the teachers after the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the educationalists, teachers were hit hard during the lockdown, but most of the interventions to recover from the effects of the pandemic have been designed to target the learners.

They cite the new abridged curriculum that was designed to help the learners recover the lost time however, less training has been given to the teachers who are expected to deliver the curriculum.

Speaking during the teacher education symposium held on Friday, the educationists asked the Ministry of Education to prioritize the continuous training of the teachers.

Michael Lwassapijja, a teacher educator at Kyambogo University –Mubende National Teachers College notes that the preparedness of a teacher in delivering any content is important hence the need to train teachers on the new curriculum.

The ministry introduced a new lower secondary curriculum in 2020 and trained the trainers however, after a few weeks into the implementation schools were closed due to the covid-19 pandemic.

When schools reopened fully in January 2022, the ministry introduced the abridged curriculum to enable the learners to catch up with the lost time by condensing the content.

According to Lwassampijja, the ministry and the schools should ensure that the teachers receive enough training on delivering this curriculum for effective delivery and learning.

However, in addition to the abridged curriculum, the educationalists also argue that teachers need to be continuously supported in aspects that include among others competencies, attitude, skills, research capabilities, use of ICT, and wellness.

During the lockdown, many teachers could not deliver lessons online due to a lack of skills in ICT.

Charles Akoyo, a consultant with the Ministry of Education and UNICEF says that during the lockdown, learners were knowledgeable about using digital gadgets compared to their teachers.

However, during the symposium, it was recommended that teacher training institutions make a deliberate strategic plan to measure how far they have embedded ICT in their programs.

The Secretary of Education Service Commission, Dr. Asuman Lukwago, challenged the teacher education training and development department to expand their scope to the regions and exchange views on how best to grow the teacher education standards in the country.

The Minister of Education Janet Kataha Museveni noted that teachers will be required to adopt new approaches to learning. The use of hybrid learning strategies, including the use of ICT will be inevitable.

Jonathan Kamwana, the Commissioner of Teacher Education Training, and Development says that they will analyze the recommendations from the symposium and up with a position on the teacher’s education standards after the covid -19 lockdown.

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