The United Nations Children’s Fund (NUICEF) has urged the federal and state governments to employ more female teachers in schools in northern Nigeria.
UNICEF said “this will drive girls’ enrolment in schools and eradicate the out-of-school children growing population.”
It stated this during the release of two reports: “Effect of Female Teachers on girls’ enrollment and retention in Northern Nigeria, and C4D Assessment in Basic Education” Wednesday, in Abuja.
The Fund said the effects of female teachers on girls’ enrolment and retention in Northern Nigeria were positive, going by its research reports conducted in eight states in the North.
The reports said some schools in urban and rural areas “will need to recruit 58,121 females across 17,576 rural schools and an additional 3,775 female teachers across 4,225 in urban schools.”
The reports read: “To provide additional perspective on the magnitude of female teacher deficit in both urban and rural areas, we calculate that in the eight states under study, rural schools will need to hire about an additional 58,121 females across 17,576 rural schools and an additional 3,775 female teachers across 4,225 urban schools.
“This deficit is much more significant in rural schools where on average, each school will have to hire additional three female teachers.”
The reports also recommended that female teachers being posted to rural areas should be given adequate financial compensation to attract first rate candidates to the teaching profession.
“One approach that teachers and head teachers have mentioned in this report is that teachers with rural posting must be provided with allowances to compensate for the quality of life discrepancies between living in urban and rural areas.
“Another recommendation is helping female teachers navigate the societal and gendered expectations of their dual roles as caregivers and professionals. This is critical to increasing the number of female teachers in rural schools.
“Also like male teachers, female teachers are consistently motivated by the professional development and career advancement opportunities and would likely take positions in rural schools if those positions are available.
“The historical shortage of educated women in northern Nigeria must be addressed for the long-term to increase the pool of potential female teachers.” (NAN)