TEACHERS EDUCATIONAL COMPETENCE AND THE MANAGEMENT OF DIVERSITY IN SOME SELECTED PRIMARY SCHOOLS IN BUEA MUNICIPLITY
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This study was out to investigate the teacher’s educational competence and the management of Diversity in some selected primary school in Buea Municipality. The study was guided by a questionnaire and adopted the survey research design. Data were collected from 60 teachers from different schools and analysed of the management diversity using descriptive statistics.
The major findings show that teachers’ education competence has to do with a lot of management diversities in the classroom. The main recommendation of the study was the need to see how teachers could enhance the various types of diversities in the classroom.
Generally, it is quite evident that the word ‘Teacher Educational competent’ has become an essential factor in the management of children of school-going age ranging from primary level of education to tertiary level of education. In an attempt to answer this burning issue, some selected primary schools in the Buea municipality will be examined in light of the problem faced by some pupils in the school.
Thus, this work attempt to seek ways by which teachers’ educational competence can be intelligibly communicated to manage diversity in primary schools.
Following this brief introduction, the rest of the chapter continues with a background of the study, statement of the problem, objective of the study, the specific objective of the study, general research question and specific research questions, significance of the study, the scope of the study, operational definition of terms and summary of the study.
There has been confusion and suspicion over the use of the term ‘competence’ as an element of life role or occupation ( lamb 2000). It seems as if the myth of handling children with diversity in primary schools have not yet been broken.
Even in the USA, the use of the term “competence’ has largely been attributed to performance. Both education where the curriculum design demands assessing children based on their level of competence in any particular sphere of endeavour.
As that is not enough, teachers’ educational competence varies from one culture to the next. With a multiplicity of cultures in Africa, policymakers and institutions have a greater share in what obtains.
For example, what obtains in Nigeria may be marked different obtain in Cameroon. Within the Cameroon context, the Anglophone sub system of education and francophone subsystem of education even with the harmonization law of education in (date) still has some diversity among them.
Talking about management, Horby (2001) defines it as the control and organization of something. In the light of managing diversity in the educational setting, the role played by socialization becomes much more relevant.
Children come from diverse backgrounds with different mindsets and competencies. The family as an informal sector of education has proven to be an important indicator in the performance of children in school. In the Buea municipality with a diversity of children from different walks of life, it becomes much more complicated. Hence, careful and adequate competence by teachers must be employed to manage these diversities.
Before the arrival of the Christian missionaries in Africa, diversity among children has existed. Thus, the word “diversity” is as old as men and as new as space travel. Speaking the creation narrative in the Bible reveals to us that the first humans were not the same. No two persons on earth are the same.
In the school milieu, children differ in terms of the level of comprehension, age, size, intellect etc. Hence, this topic was highly conceived with the idea that some children suffer because adequate educational competence has not been employed by some teachers to curb the situation.
The problem is if teachers employ an adequate learning paradigm with the help of scientific methods, these will help to curb the problem of diversity among pupils in some primary schools in Buea municipality.
Teachers’ ability to develop relationships among learners, teachers’ knowledge of learners, teachers’ ability to inspire and influence learners are some of the characteristics that can help boost diversity among learners.
The specific objectives of this study are to find out:
The root cause of diversity among pupils in some primary schools in Buea municipality.
The approach needed to bridge the gap between diversity among pupils in Buea municipality.
The effect of teacher’s educational competence on the management of diversity among pupils in Buea municipality.
Generally, the study attempts to investigate how teachers’ educational competence may be employed to solve problems of diversity among pupils in some selected primary schools in Buea municipality.
i) What is the root cause of diversity among pupils in primary schools in Buea municipality?
ii) What approach is needed to bridge the gap in the management of diversity among pupils in Buea municipality?
iii) How do teachers’ educational competence affects the management of diversity among pupils in the Buea municipality?
This piece of work is first and foremost important to the student researcher given that her field of endeavour touches on salient issues on the said topic. Secondly given that in the future, she would have to apply knowledge learned from this material to the field, it will go a long way to open her mind on how to handle such problems when they crop up in the school milieu. Also, educational stakeholders will have to take a rethink how the curriculum is structured to meet the needs of the learners. This knowledge will enable them to draw up the individual education plan that will be favourable to all learners.
This work is limited to the scope of primary school pupils managing diversity in the Buea municipality. Therefore, the main purpose of their study will be to find out among others the root cause, the approach needed and effects of management of a diversity of learners in some selected primary schools in Buea municipality.
The terms defined below are those that make up the title of this research paper and those that are relevant in the work. They are:
According to Radhika (2018), education renders a significant contribution in leading to effective growth and development of the individuals and teachers have an important role to play in imparting teacher education is focused upon the impartment of training to the teachers, with the main purpose of achieving the desired academic outcomes. Therefore, to perform their job duties up to the required standard, they need to enhance their skills and abilities.
Over the last twenty years, the discourse around education and training has shifted. We now tend to use a pseudo-commercial language of markets, investments and products. The interest in “competence” and “competency” has been part of this move. However, according to Tight (1996) competence is a measure of what someone can do at a particular point in time. In other words, it involves being up to those tasks that life presents us with. In the context of this paper, competence will require the skills and knowledge that will enable the teacher to be successful.
According to Hornby(2001) management involves the control and organization of something. Additionally, it is the process of planning, organization, activating and controlling an organization’s operation to achieve coordination of human and material resources essential in the effective and efficient attainment of objectives.
The concept of diversity encompasses acceptance and respect. This can be along the dimension of race, eternality, gender, sexual and political beliefs (Procter, 2003)