THE news that all prospective teachers need to be registered with the Teaching Council of Zambia (TCZ) is a progressive arrangement because the institution is mandated to regulate teachers.
This is good news following recent reports of cheating teachers who present fake professional certificates to earn a place in the sector, which we feel was very unfortunate considering that teachers impact students’ lives every day.
In their agenda to help shape students’ minds by laying their foundation of knowledge across all market-driven subjects, it is somewhat unpredictable to see unqualified teachers empowering learners with skills to actively participate in the national development process that continues to take place in the country.
There have been disturbing cases where some teachers have been found wanting after engaging in sexual favours for examinations leakages which obviously affect the quality of graduates being churned out into the job market.
Some teachers have gone to an extent of applying underhand methods to reserve school places for their friends and relatives, sometimes for financial gain.
The challenges besetting the teaching profession should be fully addressed by the TCZ to ensure activities in the teaching sector thrive on quality and remain beneficial to learners.
Otherwise, we shall always fail to meet the expectation of the employment market because learning institutions will always churn out half baked graduates who will fail to perform to expectations of various economic industries.
Without quality education, the story of under-development will always be the talk of the day, because of lack of economic drivers to take adds value to the country’s vision of prosperity for ordinary members of society.
In addressing hurdles affecting the teaching profession, a requirement has been put in place to ensure the need for teacher registration and teacher recruitment, where applicants will now submit their forms to the nearest District Education Board Secretaries (DEBS) Office.
Teacher registration and college accreditation is now a legal requirement in Zambia. This simply means that for any person to be employed or to undertake duties of a teacher or as an education practitioner or administrator, in a public or private school or college of education, they need to be registered with the TCZ. Additionally, for any institution to offer teacher education (training), that facility must be accredited by the Council. This law applies to both the public and private sectors.
Pursuant to the Teaching Profession Act No. 5 of 2013, the Teaching Council of Zambia (TCZ) was established and is mandated to regulate teachers, their practice and professional conduct and to accredit all Colleges of Education.
Teachers and other stakeholders, therefore, need to appreciate that the TCZ has come to add value to the teaching profession, by professionalising it and raining the status of the profession. Most importantly the education needs to impact national development positively.
With this latest provision, we hope that sanity will prevail over malpractices that have long characterised the teaching profession.
Above all, it is also in the interest of the nation that the TCZ will up their game in fulfilling its mandate.