The minimum teaching qualification for Ghanaian basic school teachers is now a bachelor's degree, Minister for Education, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, has announced.
He said the decision is as a result of research evidence that, weakness in the quality of teachers holding diplomas affect their delivery.
Dr Prempeh said a report by the Department for International Development in 2015, observed that Diploma in Education curriculum does not adequately prepare trainees to teach in Ghanaian schools.
"Mr Speaker, we deeply appreciate the fact that early years of a child's education are extremely significant to their future.
"Consequently, we have, in focus on teacher reforms taken necessary steps to upgrade all our Colleges of Education to University Colleges to award a Bachelor of Education degrees following a review of teacher education curriculum into standards-based curriculum," he stated.
Dr Prempeh made this disclosure in Parliament yesterday when he delivered a statement on education and teacher reforms in the country.
According to the Manhyia South MP, implementation of the new teacher education curriculum began in October 2018, with each College of Education affiliated to one of five public universities.
Working in close collaboration with the Transforming Teacher Education and Learning Programme, Dr Prempeh said "our aim is to upgrade capacity and improve upon quality of teacher education to position our teachers to be able to respond to our current and future challenges in education."
To further deepen the government's commitment to teachers and their professional growth, the minister said a professional teacher allowance of GH¢1,200 per year for professional teachers and a GH¢600 per year for non-professionals was in the offing.
"This will enable teachers to invest in improving and upgrading their skills and keeping abreast with moderns trends to assist in improving learning outcomes," he told the MPs.
Dr Prempeh said Cabinet had approved proposals for the management of post-retirement contracts in public universities.
"This approval provides grounds for streamlining and regularising the need to retain highly skilled and experienced academic staff to support the core business of the universities," Dr Prempeh stressed.
He said post-retirement contracts would be guided by the current mandatory retirement age of 60, and associate professors and professors shall be eligible for post retirement contracts until the age of 70.
As part of school management reforms, Dr Prempeh said government was introducing management pathways for teachers who show early interest in school management.
"We believe it is important to identify and groom inspirational teachers to assume management roles and drive academic excellence," he said.
The government, Dr Prempeh said, was committed to the wellbeing of teachers and would make the teacher the fulcrum around which the education sector would revolve.