The Liberian educational system is squarely on the downsize from a different spectrum. This is because the teaching exacerbation in Liberia appears to be a helpless struggle between leaders and students. But from all indications, H.E. President Weah anxiously wants to resolve this systematic problem that has been kicked down the road by all the Liberian presidents, including the then president Sirleaf.
This poor and sad educational scenario in Liberia cannot be resolved overnight by H.E President Weah. Furthermore, H.E. President Weah alone is virtually unable to arrest the downsize of the Liberian educational system. Therefore, H.E. President Weah’s communal approach to this matter by vehemently signing-off on 6,000 Nigerian educators is basically an overnight solution that is three times likely to make the educational matter even more ridiculous and ugly. This attempt by H.E. President Weah is actually from a point of weakness and not from a point of academic strength from all iota of convenience.
From all intents and purposes, our Nigerians brothers and sisters are simply the wrong crackerjacks for this Herculean academic task for two unique rationales: First, Nigeria like Liberia both have underdeveloped systems including their educational systems. Second, every negative red-flag associated with the ridiculous Liberian educational system is three times rooted in the Nigerian educational system which is worse than expected. Third, the problem with the Liberian educational system is not about teachers or students’ problems, it is basically a structural breakdown, lack of training, poor capacity building mechanisms, lack of basic incentives, poor and policy orientations just to name a few. The 6000 Nigerians will have a serious toll on taxpayers, lodging, security and welfare, that budget could be a channel to additional Liberian teacher training initiatives for the short term.
H.E. President Weah missed a golden opportunity by asking the France President Emmanuel Macron to help improve a wrong project like a sport when the request should have evolved around the France President support for the disgraceful Liberian educational system in place of sports. H.E. President Weah and all educational stakeholders should meet with students and teachers and principals and have a three-day educational conference to actually identify the problems affecting the Liberian educational system from the horses own mouths. Before the proposed confab, H.E. President Weah should first thank all:
1. Teachers, lecturers, and professors for their sacrificial services to the nation. H.E. President Weah should be recognized and respected the teaching professions and creates very strong motivational programs for all teachers, lecturers, and professors in Liberia.
2.There should be special clarion-call by the H.E. President Weah’s Gov’t for all well-trained Liberian educators abroad, the US, Europe, Middle East and Asia to report for a duty educational service to their native country Liberia as part of the overhauling mechanism of the Liberian poor educational system.
3. All the educational laws, programs, and policies on the books should be thoroughly reviewed, and rewrite those that are an irrelevance to the Liberian educational system and preserving the aspects that are appealing to the 21st-century new learning demand and academic requirements from a global perspective.
4.There should be the thorough examination of the immediate credentials of all directors, Assistant Ministers, Deputy Ministers, Minister, School Superintendents, and District Educational Officers within the Ministry of Education (MOE) etc., Those with retirement status should be retired. Those who supposed to be trained be sent for training.
5. Reasonable salaries for teachers, lecturers, and professors should be recast in the 2017/18 budgetary allocation. The erection of Teachers’ housing facilities, teachers’ transportation research allowances, teachers dress code allowance be envisaged.
6. There should be the need to weed out all unqualified teachers, lecturers, and professors and send them either to France, US and Ghana to upgrade their teaching skills and administrative capabilities that are in line with the 21st-century expectations for better quality education. Furthermore, the student should be expelled for poor academic performance.
7. There should be the need to overhaul the entire UL and Tubman University’s authorities, policies and curriculum including the entire registries of those public Universities and their academic curriculum. Personnel credentials at these Universities are examined for retirement and continues training for those that will be retained. There is the need to recruit qualified teachers and re-trained the old ones and retired those that meet retirement age.
8. Special emphasis should be given to the Teachers’ College at UL. The college prepares teachers to teach. There is the need to reviewed the credentials of those teachers who are preparing others to teach in our public-school system. The need to review the entire College teaching curriculum whether it on pal with current teaching requirement of global standards and those that are not necessary should be upgraded or replaced.
9.There is the urgent need to upgrade all the teachers training institutions in Liberia and improve regular bi-monthly teachers workshops/seminars.10.There should be a law passed that will punish teachers who directly or indirectly encourage sex for grade, cash for grades, farm labor for grade, bribery, extortions, sale of test papers for grade, and teacher doing students’ assignments for exchange of sexual favor, leaks and exchanges of sensitive exams materials that will breed acute corruption should doers should be punished by law.
11. Both public and private Universities, Colleges, and elementary/high schools authorities should be audited on a regular basis to install in those authorities a sense of accountability and transparency especially schools and universities that are being subsided by the Liberian government.
12.The H.E. President Weah’s Gov’t will need to equip schools with one Library each and two giant Public Libraries around Monrovia and the various counties. Modern and appropriate books, school desks/chairs, computers, availability of electricity, student lunches, transportation student buses, student discount bookstores, Teachers’ research libraries’ in each public schools and Universities, teachers’ luncheon centers in each school and public universities and teachers’ special bank loan initiatives be enacted by the Liberian government.
13.The MOE should upgrade the teacher educational workshops/seminars every six months as a shot plan of action. There is the need to overhaul the Commission of Higher Education entire leadership and re-examines all certifications and accreditations of private colleges and universities and other local academic institutions in Liberia.