According to the standards of the National Accreditation Board (NAB), only eight out of 15 teaching staff of the University of Cape Coast (UCC) Law Faculty qualified as lecturers, the General Legal Council (GLC) has said.
In a report published by the GLC on tertiary institutions that are accredited to offer legal education in Ghana, the GLC together with the NAB stated that “Some lecturers had been assigned courses which per their background and qualifications should not teach those courses.”
“About half of the current teaching staff were on the Assistant Lecturer rank. The teaching load for some of the lecturers was high (15 credit hours per week) as compared to the NAB/NCTE norm of 9-12 credit hours per week,” the findings stated.
According to the GLC, in “its bid to ensure that legal education at the Ghana School of Law meets international and professional standards, it was resolved many years ago, to monitor and evaluate academic facilities of teaching and learning in all tertiary institutions accredited by the National Accreditation Board.”
The GLC continued: “In a spirit of ensuring that these standards are maintained, [we] decided to undertake yearly monitoring and evaluation of all Law Courses in both public and private universities, so that minimum standards of proficiency shall be met by all such accredited Law Faculties, pending the entry of their graduates into the Ghana School of Law to pursue Professional Law Courses.”
The GLC has therefore warned that UCC should “desist from entering into an affiliation agreement with any tertiary education institution to mentor any law programme since UCC Faculty of Law itself did not have the requisite qualified staff to handle its law programme.
Also, the University is to “Submit the list of all private universities currently being mentored by the Faculty and indicate those responsible for various activities.”
Legal education has been in crisis in Ghana for several years now because the GLC insists the numbers of students are too high and there is very little quality out of the lot.
In the case of the NAB, they have insisted on having PhDs only to teach at Universities and Polytechnics, most of which are now Technical Universities. Also, NAB insists that lecturers with training in different academic disciplines should not teach in the Universities.
For example, a person who studied Chemistry for their Bachelor’s degree and now have a Masters in Journalism should not teach journalism to undergrads.
This is a contentious matter since journalism needs science correspondents.
Last week, the Minister for Education announced that professors will now keep their faculty positions till age 70, which could bring legal issues a la Martin Amidu.
This announcement could be a sign of the Ministry of Education’s resolve to sack those without PhD and or are wearing a “skirt and blouse”, a term that is used to identify those with training in a different bachelor’s programme which is different from their masters/PhD.
In the particular case of the UCC Law faculty, those with the grade Assistant Lecturer in all likelihood do not have PhDs.