The Nigerian Academy of Education has urged teachers in the country to embrace Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to remain relevant in the digital age.
The President of the Academy, Prof. U Uvonmi, who spoke at the academy’s 30th annual congress held in Kaduna on Tuesday, said the world had become digital driven.
He said that teachers in the country must join the train or lose out.
“Teachers who are yet to adopt ICT in the teaching profession are on the brink of becoming irrelevant in the current digital age that has taken over every sphere of life.
“We are in the new digital age of learners, but unfortunately, significant numbers of Nigerian teachers belong basically to the analogue age.
“For relevance in the digital age, teachers must do a lot in the area of ICT knowledge and application, if the teaching profession must transform to global level of relevance and competitiveness,” he said.
Uvonmi said that the theme of the conference, “Transforming Education in Nigeria to Global Levels of Relevance and Competitiveness,” cannot be achieved without teachers systematically keying into the digital age.
In his keynote address, the Secretary to Kogi State Government, Prof. Olubgemiro Jegede, said that the slow adoption of ICT by teachers in the country posed a serious challenge to the nation’s education system.
Jegede described ICT as a crucial tool for delivering quality education in the country and urged Nigerian teachers to key in, to remain relevant and compete favourably on the global stage.
He said that the academy, as a critical stakeholder in the education sector, needed to produce a position paper that would guide government on issues bordering on education.
Declaring the event open, Prof. Vincent Tenebe, the Vice-Chancellor, National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Kaduna Study Centre, urged the academy to convince the government to reposition the teaching profession.
Tenebe said that teachers must be at the forefront when discussing matters of education, and should be given their due relevance.
“If we don’t recognize them and encourage them, then whatever we are doing, we are just wasting our time.
“Nobody wants to be a teacher today because there is nothing so special about the teaching profession.
“If you can convince the government to make teaching the highest earning profession, people will compete to become teachers and it will not be a dumping ground for job seekers,’’ he said. (NAN)