Malawi Government, through the Ministry of Education, says it is on a drive to put measures aimed at improving conditions. for teachers and addressing teacher issues by motivating and professionalizing the teaching force.
Director of Administration in the Ministry, James Manyetera said this during national teacher’s conference held under the theme “Teachers, Policies and Practices in the Time of Covid-19: Opportunities and Dilemmas”.
The conference has pulled together teachers, teacher managers, policy makers, curriculum specialists, researchers, and civil society activists to mobilize efforts towards ensuring that the teaching profession remains central to the education system and to national development.
Manyetera, therefore, said the Ministry will continue to work hard to ensure that Malawi’s policy framework puts teachers at the core of ensuring access and quality of education, as implementers of the curriculum and facilitator of learning.
He also said the rapid expansion of primary and secondary education has drastically increased the demand for trained primary and secondary school teachers.
“To meet the demand, as government, we continue to put in place several priorities and strategies around thematic areas of access and equity, quality and relevance, and governance and management to be implemented over the National Education Sector Investment Plan (NESIP) period.
“However, we are also cognizant of the fact that while we note some positive strides, there remains several challenges which will require us to ensure that we have motivated teaching force, better working conditions of teachers, strong governance and better management of teacher education and CPD with well, laid out promotion guides which have implications not only for the delivery of the national education vision and goals but also the appeal and image of the teaching profession,” he explained.
He hoped that issues to be discussed during the four-day national conference will stir serious debates about how best authorities can do to ensure development of policies that will be responsive to the contemporary times teachers are living in.
Manyetera further thanked UNESCO and UNICEF, through the NTI project for supporting the Ministry in the development of the National Teacher Policy as well as the CPD framework implementation Plan, among other initiatives.
He said the conference will, therefore, give them a better perspective of the continuing work of the policy and respond to contextual needs.
“Papers submitted to this conference, following a call for abstracts in July 2020, have looked at, among other things, the impact of COVID -19 on teachers and teaching in general, best practices, innovations unearthed, challenges faced, and opportunities discovered during the COVID-19 period when schools remained closed and how teaching and learning will look like in the future.
“As a ministry we are excited and will explore how we can document shared results and learn from such experiences to continue putting the country on the right path and to continue addressing the education needs necessary for ensuring equitable access to quality and inclusive education towards 2030 and beyond,” he explained.