Education Ministry sets up c’ttee to probe Teacher Licensure Exam mass failure

Dr. Yaw Adutwum
Photo: Education Minister Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum at a function

A committee to inves­tigate the causes for the mass failures recorded in the Ghana Teachers Licensure Examination (TLE) over the period will soon be inaugurated to commence work, the Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum has assured.

He said the situation where trained teachers were unable to demonstrate their ability through the TLE was worrying, and the government would do everything necessary to ensure that the issue was addressed.

Out of the 7,728 candidates who took part in the 10th GTLE held between May 4 and 5, 2023 only 1,277 candidates passed repre­sent 16.5 per cent. However, the remaining 6,451 representing 83.5 per cent of the candidates failed the examination making it the worse ever.

Addressing a news conference in Accra yesterday, Dr Adutwum said the six-member committee would be chaired by the Deputy Minis­ter of Education, Reverend John Ntim Fordjour, with representa­tives from the heads of public and private colleges of education, the National Teaching Council and a testing expert from the University of Cape Coast (UCC).

“The committee is going to look at the extent to which the TLE is aligned with the national teacher’s standards and other supporting policies or framework such as the pre-tertiary curriculum, and then look at the quality of students being admitted into the teacher education institution relative to grade and programme of speciali­sation at the Senior High Schools,” he emphasised.

He said the committee among other things would also look at the selection process of students going into teacher education institutions and also look at the possibility of integrating the Ghana Teacher Licensure Examination (GTLE) in terms of the curriculum and assessment framework into the as­sessment at the institutions as well as examine best practices globally and advice the minister.

Dr Adutwum explained that the most important thing was that there was the need to ensure that there were enough preparatory ma­terials for those who were going to take the examination, stressing that “In other places, you go and there are prep books, you buy, go and study and you do well. You can’t walk into exams based on your prior training without some prep for the examinations and expect to do well.”

He said the goal of the ministry was to make sure people who went through such preparations suc­ceeded at the end, and we have to create the eco-system that ensures that they succeed and get into the classroom.

On his part, the Registrar of the National Teaching Council, Dr Christian Addai-Poku said the GTLE started in 2018 as part of the government’s effort to improve teacher professionalism and ensure the quality of teaching in the country.

He said the areas of the examination had been essential professional skills, literacy and numeracy, and thus far, the NTC had conducted 10 licensure exam­inations since 2018, explaining that the examination is held twice every year.

Dr Addai-Poku explained that even though the average failure rate since the inception of the GTLE had hovered around 27 per cent, the council realised that there were several factors including examination malpractices which ac­counted for the high pass rate.

To eliminate these malpractic­es, he said the council initiated several reforms which included the introduction of serialisation and item differentials in the exam­ination to help avert collusion and copying among candidates at the examination halls.

These measures he explained led to a rise in the failure rate during the 2021 GTLE, however, the 2023 GTLE was irregular as such the result was not a surprise at all.

“The total number of candidates who took part in the examination was 7,728 out of these, 1,277 candidates passed representing 16.5 per cent. As many as 6,451 candidates failed in the examina­tion representing 83.5 per cent.

The likely reasons for such a high number of failures as I indicated earlier on, this was an irregular ex­amination and it produced irregular results,” he emphasised.


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