The Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Lagos State Wing, has appealed to Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode for massive recruitment of teachers in primary and secondary schools in the state.
Mr Adesina Adedoyin, Chairman of the union, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Lagos.
He said the appeal became necessary because the teachers concerned were facing enormous task, in the discharge of their duties, due to long period of teaching and large classes.
Adedoyin also said that most teachers were having between 48 to 38 periods of teaching every week.
He said a class that had about 120 students, grouped in different sections and one teacher, would have to do so much work which could have been done by three teachers.
The NUT boss said this situation was affecting members of the union, hence the need for massive recruitment of teachers in 2019.
Adedoyin said in a situation where an English teacher, had about 48 periods a week, questioned how will such teacher could cope with his or her job.
According to him, such a development would affect the performance of the students.
“We have some teachers who have between 40 and 38 periods a week and with the number of students they are teaching, most especially in the secondary school, it is very challenging.
“A class has about 120 students; with one teacher, the class may be grouped and the students need supervision, the teacher needs to mark his work, cross check and do corrections.
“If one teacher continues to face such enormous task, there is no way it will not affect performance,” he said.
The NUT chairman noted that because of mass statutory retirement of teachers, many classrooms had been virtually empty and left without teachers.
He also appealed to the state government to upgrade hardworking and worthy non-teaching staff, who had upgraded themselves through in-service training, to be converted teachers.
“We need more teachers in the classrooms; majority of our classrooms are being manned by non-teaching staff.
“It is not their duty to teach, but some have gone on in-service training, they have had that pedagogy training as regards teaching profession.
“We have continued to appeal to the Lagos State government to look at those worthy non-teaching staff that have gone on in-service training and have upgraded themselves, to be converted to teachers.
“Converting them to teachers will encourage and will also serve as motivation to put in their best and also reduce the problem of shortage of teachers in our schools,” he said.
Adedoyin said the non-teaching staff should be categorised as teachers because of their passion and commitment to the job and acquire experience due to in-service training.
“Because if they are not categorised as teachers and they are doing the job of teaching, majority of them will not have the passion and will not be committed.
“But, once they are placed on appropriate grade, appropriate level and addressed with appropriate status, I believe it will assist them to make sure that they put more effort to what they are doing.”