How Prof Azare is Transforming NTI

The Director General, National Teacher’s Institute, Kaduna Professor Garba Dahuwa Azare has since assumption in office embarked on repositioning and restructuring of the institute through palpable policies and programmes aimed at improving quality and standard architecture of Teacher’s Training in Nigeria. Deshi Munkuwe Nengak writes on the importance of Teacher’s Training towards better and quality educational system in Nigeriain line with the recent plausible achievements of Prof. Azare.

As rightly ascribed by Leo Buscaglia, “you can only give away what you have…If you don’t have it, you don’t have it to give”. Keying to this fact, the need for teachers training who are saddled with the responsibility to teach others at every level of profession in life is paramount and essential in achieving higher standard of learning in every society.

Concurrently, the standard and quality of education or literacy of a nation formed the bases that define the growth and development of such a state. Likewise, a poor, decayed or collapsed education system is the collapse of a nation. In essence, a low or poor educational system leads to other major factors responsible for degraded, uncivilized, underdeveloped condition of the third world countries which Africa has visible examples.

Apparently, destroying a nation does not require the use of atomic bombs or the use of long range missiles, it only requires lowering the quality of education and allowing ill-trained teachers or lecturers to teach in schools and other high study centers. By that, quark graduates would be harvested into different professions where Patients die in the hands of such doctors, buildings collapse as the results of ill-qualified engineers, mismanagement and misappropriation of the economy and figures in the hands of quack economists & accountants, humanity dies at the hands of such religious scholars, and Justice is lost at the hands of such judges, etc.

To tackle the menace through quality teachers training for the noble task of imparting knowledge to others, the National Teachers’ Institute, National Teachers Institute came on board, dedicated to teachers training. The institute was established in 1976 by the Federal Government primarily to manage the pressing needs to train and teaching staff at all levels of the educational system. Act No. 7 of 10 April 1978 establishing the Institute charged it among others with the responsibility of: providing courses of instruction leading to the development, upgrading and certification of teachers as specified in the relevant syllabus using distance education techniques.

On the 1st August, 2016 Professor Garba Dahuwa Azare was appointed as the Director General and Chief Executive of the National Teachers’ Institute, Kaduna by the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces, Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR. Professor Garba Dahuwa Azare. Since he took over the mantle of leadership, the Institute recorded tremendous progress and tangible transformations in diverse departments and programmes which effects has since reflected on quality of teachers that have graduated and the undergraduates at the institute.

The Socrates Award Winner, Prof. Azare since assumption of office complement his appointment by effecting his wealth of experience gained within and outside the country as an educationist to ensure Nigeria’s hope for better education system through teachers training is actualized.
His exemplary style of leadership, characterized by; honesty, determination, foresight, humility, prudency, transparency, sincerity and commitment form the pillars of his strength in transforming the Institute within a very short period. Of course, these distinct qualities and efforts are visible through the outcomes and achievements recorded which equally making NTI, Kaduna a solution to Nigeria’s teachers training challenges.

Noteworthy, on his assumption in office, Azare successfully restructured the Institute and established new Departments of Examinations, Quality Assurance and Academic Services for optimal performance and efficiency in service delivery. Staffs were re- organized and posted on the basis of their qualification, relevance and experience for effective and efficient results.

In his wisdom, the DG have been engaging seasoned educationist from various Universities of the country to serve as external Quality Assurance Assessors for all the Institute’s academic programmes. This is with the view to enhancing quality and standard. Under his leadership, NTI has developed new robust software for processing of results.External partnership and collaboration with more Universities on decentralisation of affiliation of Post Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) has since given out positive results. The affiliation is with six Universities, having one University per geopolitical zone.

Since his assumption of Office as Director General and Chief Executive of the Institute, productivity of staff has been generally high. Staff are being promoted as at when due and this has been motivating and boosting their morale.He successfully secured all backlog of outstanding PGDE Certificates with National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) and Usmanu Danfodio University, Sokoto.

The Institute in collaboration with Commonwealth of Learning (COL), Canada, conducted a 4 – day International Workshop on Learner Support for Green Teacher Nigeria (GTN) programme from Monday 13th to Thursday 16th January, 2020 at the Institute’s Headquarters, Kaduna.

The Institute also conducted the 2019 edition of the nationwide Capacity Building training workshops for Primary and Junior Secondary School teachers under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Project. The workshops were conducted from Monday 20th to Friday 24th January 2020, it was on thematic areas:Language Communication Skills, Basic, Classroom Management, Basic Teaching Methodologies, Information and Communication Technology (ICT).This has in no small measure equipped the participants who will equally transfer the knowledge to their students.

Also, as part of Quality Assurance activities of NTI academic programmes, the Institute conducted a 2 – day workshop on the use of NCCE Accreditation Toolkit from 3rd to 4th February 2020. Participants were drawned from States, Zones and the Headquarters.

Prof. Garba Dahuwa Azare, Director-General/Chief Executive of NTI presenting Certificate of Attendance to one of the participants at the end of Quality Assurance for NCCE Accreditation and Institutional Renewal through Attitudinal Change and Value Transformation workshop for staff of the Institute, February 3rd – 4th 2020 at the SMASE Hall, NTI Kaduna

The Institute conducted writing, review and editing workshop for newly introduced courses of NCE course materials from Monday 3rd to Saturday 8th January, 2020 at the Institute’s Headquarters, Kaduna. However, new courses were previously introduced in the Institute’s NCE programme. This is with the view to providing more opportunity for teachers to specialise in other key areas of the curriculum. Some of these courses include; Agricultural Science, Biology, Chemistry, Physics and the Nigerian Languages.

As part of Quality Assurance of our Academic Programmes, the Institute introduced a customized cellophane security envelopes for packaging of Examinations Question Papers. It has also restructured and re-strategised the entire conduct of the Examination with a view to eliminating Examination malpractice.

The National Universities Commission (NUC) conducted accreditation of the Bachelor’s Degree Programmes (BDPs) in November, 2019. The exercise was very successful.

National Universities’ Commission (NUC), accreditation team inspecting facilities at Institute’s e-Learning Centre, during the working visit to the Institute, in November 18th – 20th 2019
writes on the importance of Teacher’s Training towards better and quality educational system in Nigeriain line with the recent plausible achievements of Prof. Azare.