Dzakpasu 2023 best teacher
Faith Aku Dzakpasu, a 37-year-old female teacher at the GRETA ‘D’ Shepherd Two Basic School at Awoshie in the Ga Central Municipality has been adjudged the Most Outstanding Teacher for 2023.
For her prize, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, who was the guest of honour, presented Mrs Dzakpasu, a mother of two, with a prototype of a three-bedroom apartment, worth GH¢450,000, to be built at a place of her choice in any part of the country.
She was also presented with GH¢1 million worth of insurance from the State Insurance Company (SIC) and 1,000 exercise books at a colourful ceremony at the Ghana Secondary Technical School (GSTS) in Takoradi.
The first runner-up award went to Isabella Wussa-Tetteh of Sege D/A Primary School in the Greater Accra Region, while Fredous Iddi-Amin of Ogbojo Presbyterian Basic School, was the second runner-up.
For their prizes, Ms Wussa-Tetteh took home a pick-up truck, GH¢1
million worth of insurance cover from SIC and 1,000 exercise books, with Iddi-Amin taking home a brand-new saloon car, in addition to the two other prizes, the GH¢1 million insurance cover and 1,000 exercise books.
Other awards presented were the Best Junior High School Teacher, Best Primary School Teacher, Best Primary Teacher, Best Senior High, and Best Technical Teacher, among others.
Aside from the awards, a new award, Best Tutor from all the Colleges of Education, was conferred on Simon Boateng of the St Monica’s College of Education, Asante Mampong, for standing out in CoEs across the country.
His prize was a pick-up truck.
President Akufo-Addo praised teachers for their dedication and commitment towards the development of the nation through education.
He explained that the huge investment being made in the education sector in the country would not yield any result without the teacher.
President Akufo-Addo stated that the role of teachers in the training of the right manpower for the nation could not be underestimated and pledged to continue supporting the sector to ensure that effective teaching and learning took place in all schools across the country.
The President explained that “introducing the GH¢1,200 Continuous Professional Development Allowance, paying an intervention allowance amounting to GH¢65 million for senior high school teachers for the 2022/2023 academic year, implementing categories two and three allowances for district and regional directors of education, and ensuring a 30 per cent salary increase for all teachers in 2023” would go a long way to motivate teachers to deliver more.
The President assured all teachers who have not yet received their laptops under the One-Teacher, One-Laptop project, that everything possible would be done to ensure that they received theirs and called on the Minister of Education to do everything possible to ensure that the outstanding ones were presented to the deserving teachers.
“I have tasked the Minister of Education, personally, to ensure that those few teachers yet to receive their laptops join the overwhelming majority who have received theirs,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo also lauded the NTC and all other institutions which contributed in diverse ways to the awards for the commitment shown in honouring the nation’s gallant teachers.
The President was happy that the huge investment being made in the education sector had started yielding good results, citing the good grades made by this year’s students who sat the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) in all subjects.
The Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum, also praised the President for his commitment and interest in the development of education in the country.
He assured the President of his readiness to continue working very hard towards the attainment of the best education for the nation, since it was the driving force behind the development of every country.
The minister appealed to all stakeholders in the education sector to continue working very hard for the transformation of the country.
“We are not just providing education for the nation’s youth, but we are positioning the nation to become a giant in various facets with the training of people with critical thinking skills and knowledge that is required towards the development of the nation’s economy,” Dr Adutwum stated.
The Registrar of the National Teaching NTC, Dr Christian Addai-Poku, praised the partners and other institutions which played various roles to honour teachers as a way of motivating and appreciating them for their invaluable roles.
He pledged to continue working very hard to ensure that the quality of teaching in schools was improved by putting in place the right initiatives that would maintain the quality of instruction in schools.
Dr Addai-Poku called for a solution to the high teacher attrition situation which posed a great danger to the nation’s development.
The President of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), Rev. Isaac Owusu, on behalf of the other teacher organisations, said for the country to have well motivated teachers, the Ghana Education Service needed to pay the proposed 20 per cent of gross salary of teachers who accepted postings to under-served areas.
Other award winners
Jibril Amadu Nankpa of TUTCO Demonstration Basic School in the Upper West Region was adjudged the Best Teacher at the Junior High School level, with Abraham Fletcher, the Municipal Director of Education of Sefwi Wiawso in the Western North Region, winning the Teacher in Leadership and Administration award.
Peter Adu-Boahen of the Kumasi Technical Institute in the Ashanti Region won the Technical Teacher award, while Barikisu Suleiman of Answarudeen Islamic Basic School in the Greater Accra Region won the Best Primary Teacher award.
Best Teacher speaks
Mrs Dzakpasu attended the Peki College of Education after which she proceeded to the University of Education, Winneba (UEW) for her first degree and then to the Valley View University for a master’s degree.
A former student of Kpando Senior High School, she has been teaching for 13 years.
Mrs Dzakpasu told the Daily Graphic that she was inspired by the passion and prowess with which her Class One teacher, whom she mentioned as Mr Obeng, taught.
She said back in Bimbilla, capital of the Nanumba North District in the Northern Region, where her parents served in the public service, “I went to school always watching this man teach with great passion and creativity. So, when I grew up, I picked that creativity and that is what I have majored in”.
Asked how she was able to combine teaching and home management, Mrs Dzakpasu said it had been stressful.
She said she always believed that “where there is a passion there is a way” and virtually managed everything well at home and school.
“I feel so happy and honoured for winning this award. I have realised that hard work pays,” an elated Faith told the Daily Graphic.
“I just applied when the nominations were opened but did not have the slightest idea it was going to be so honourable today. So I give all the thanks to God for what he has done,” Mrs Dzakpasu who worships at the Awoshie Branch of the International Central Gospel Church, said.
Apart from teaching her pupils, the Class Two teacher said she tried to support those from needy homes.
Mrs Dzakpasu also promotes menstrual hygiene and has developed a number of models to help support girls in public schools.
She said her work on menstrual hygiene would be scaled up to support more girls.