The Challenge of Teacher Quality and Human Development in Nigeria


Teaching has been changed from what it used to be in Nigeria. The change has been in structure and quality. The increasing expansion of pupils’ enrolments at both the primary and secondary schools has led to the existence of six categories of teachers with different academic qualifications. This paper explored the levels of these qualifications and their influence on Human Development Index (HDI) including Life Expectancy Index (LEI), Education Index (EI), and Income Index (II). The study adopted the descriptive research design by collecting data on the quality of primary and secondary school teachers from ministries of education in 20 of the 36 states in Nigeia. The “Categories of Primary and Secondary School Teachers’ Checklist” was given to the planning units of the affected ministries for completion. The responses were then thematically analysed and discussed. It was discovered that the quality of teachers in 80% of the sampled states may be incapable of boosting the HDI of the states in Nigeria. This is because of the relatively high percentage (15%) of voluntary corps members and part-time teachers (state-organised employment opportunity programme) employed particularly at the secondary school level in the south-west; and high percentage of unqualified teachers in the northern states (up to 76% in Bauchi State). It was concluded that specific guidelines for teachers’ recruitment at both primary and secondary school levels be legislated upon and enforced across the states in Nigeria in order to ensure improved HDI.