Madam Phillipa Larsen, the National President of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), has reiterated the need for pragmatic steps to be taken to advance professional development of female teachers.
She said the female teacher was faced with numerous challenges, which did not allow her to seek further professional training and skills necessary to enhance quality education.
Addressing members of the Gomoa GNAT-Ladies Society (GNAT-LAS) at its Third Quadrennial District Delegates Roundtable, Madam Larson stressed the need to incorporate gender component in all membership educational programmes.
She said quotas must be given to women in all union activities and positions and called on GNAT-LAS to re-position itself to spearhead women empowerment and professional development.
Madam Larson challenged female teachers to exhibit higher level of professionalism and strive towards development in their chosen fields of endeavour.
“Female teachers must rise and demonstrate to the whole World that they are capable of permeating the male dominating leadership of GNAT and society at large,” she said.
“We will not have the positions on a silver platter and so we need to upgrade ourselves. Some women are not willing to take up leadership positions because of their roles at the home.”
Madam Larson encouraged female teachers to be actively involved in GNAT activities, especially with regards to training and capacity building, to develop themselves professionally.
She called on the female teachers to be bold to take up leadership positions, build their capacities and improve themselves to become competent for any position, saying once the men became aware of their competence, they would be supported.
“If you are given or nominated for a position, do not decline, but you have to build your capacity to deliver,” she advised.
Madam Mercy Esi Harrison, a Lecturer at the University of Education, Winneba, called on GNAT to accelerate the pace of achieving its gender policy.
She charged female teachers to be duty and time conscious, willing to learn in humility, be assertive and yearn for greater career progression and higher academic achievements.
She further asked them to demonstrate that women were equally as intelligent as men, often performing par excellence, set high targets and remain focused in achieving them.
That required commitment, dedication and self-motivation with exceptional competence to perform.
Madam Lily Otoo, the National Gender Coordinator of GNAT, said due to the special duties of women, though they out-numbered men in the Association, they did not show much interest in its activities.
That, she said, necessitated the formation of GNAT-LAS to encourage female teachers to actively participate in its activities and the development of GNAT gender policy.
She said GNAT had instituted a special educational package for female teachers in deprived communities to enable them to constantly upgrade themselves.
Madam Otoo urged the Ghana Education Service to see the need to contribute to the professional development of its employees by providing them with incentives and other financial support.