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Teachers’ Day: Be protectors of students – Defence Perm Sec

A Teacher, Photo: Unicef Nigeria

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence, Mr Istifanus Musa, has called on teachers to also play the role of protectors for their students aside from the normal teaching and learning.

Musa made the call during the celebration of the 2021 World Teachers’ Day and Presentation of Wards to Teachers of Armed Forces Primary and Secondary Schools as part of the event to mark the day on Tuesday in Abuja.

He said that the function of a good goes beyond teaching to earn salaries but to give direction to their wards and make them useful to themselves and the society.

He also urged teachers to see the profession as a respected one, adding that teachers must strive to live above board so that students could learn good morale from them.

He commended President Muhammadu Buhari, for approving the 40 years length of service and 65 years age of retirement for teachers, saying it was a demonstration of the government’s commitment to ensure that teachers get their reward on earth.

“However, I will also like a situation where our teachers will be the highest-paid workers in the public service.

“This is for us to attract the quality hands that will be involved in teaching and so we need to reward them adequately because the quality of manpower is determined by the quality of input,” he said.

shaping the nation’s armed forces

The Director, Education Services Department, Ministry of Defence, Mrs. Afolake Taiwo, said the defence sector had decided to celebrate the teachers considering their role in shaping the nation’s armed forces.

Taiwo said that education had remained the mother of all professions be it Doctors, Engineers, Lawyers, among others who were all taught by teachers, adding that no nation coule rise above the quality of its education.

She said the 2021 Theme, “Teachers at the heart of education recovery’’ was apt because of the closure of schools, universities and other learning institutions arising from the COVID-I9 pandemic which had affected the lives of over 1.6 billion students in over 190 countries, according to UNESCO.

She added that the ministry of defence would focus more on innovative teaching in all armed forces schools in line with the 2021 theme as against the year 2020 which was on ICT.

The Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Lucky Irabor, represented by the Director of Education, Defence Headquarters, Rear Adm. Jatau Luka, said the Defence Headquarters was committed to enhancing the standard of education in military schools.

Irabor said that a close analysis of the nation’s education system, had revealed the need for innovation and value addition, saying there was a general consensus that lack of quality education would bring many social vices.

He commended the ministry for the sustained support for the armed forces school system and also lauded the teachers for their dedication and hard work that had propelled the schools to greater height.

Gap created by the outbreak of COVID-19

One of the awardees, Mr Olubakin Ademola, a teacher at the NJ Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Abeokuta, said the recognition had spurred him to do more.

Ademola disclosed that he created and coordinated online teaching for final year students of Navy Secondary schools nationwide to bridge the gap that was created by the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.

He thanked the Ministry for recognising their effort, adding that the recognition had demonstrated that teachers’ reward will only be in heaven but also in earth.

Another recipient, Mrs Lydia Eseyin, a teacher with Command Secondary School Kaduna, expressed excitement over the recognition, saying it was a clarion call for them to deliver.

Eseyin said the mission of the teachers was to build up the children that would be useful to the nation, urging the government to pay more attention to education infrastructure.

She also called for better remuneration for the teachers all over Nigeria to encourage them to be dedicated to their responsibilities.

Reporting by Chukwuma Agbanusi; Editing by Tina Oyinsan