1.1 Background to the problem
Teachers in all nations constitute a major input in the accomplishment of educational goals and objectives. The National policy on Education (2004) in Nigeria reiterates that no education system can rise above the quality of its teachers. Hence, teachers are indispensable within the teaching-learning process. Also, trained and effective teachers are the principal assets of any educational system. Aminu (1987) aptly observes that teachers constitute not only a vital input to education but also a major drive in the production process and in the determination of the output system. Teachers touch and shape destinies. Ajayi (1997) states that teachers are the ones to make it possible for a child to be grounded in his mother tongue, acquire one or more Nigerian languages, plus English and one or more foreign languages. They are the ones to ensure a proper foundation of scientific education for the child.
In the light of this, it is impossible to think of education without the contributions of teachers. That teachers have a vital role to play is not in doubt, and this fact has been recognized by international development organization. In fact, teacher-training rates highly in the context of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which has now acquired the status of a framework for measuring development (Omolewa, 2009).
In Nigeria, the late President Musa Yar’Adua listed education among his seven-point agenda that will guide his administration in the vision 20-2020 which was aimed at ensuring that Nigeria is placed among the leading 20 world economies by the year 2020. Omolewa (2009) asserts that it must be cleared in our minds from the outset that at the centre for the attainment of these goals and vision is the teacher. For it cannot be disputed that the teacher basically determines the relevance, quality and sustainability of education. Indeed, the world has always been a teacher’s world whether this is appreciated or not.