EDUCATION FOR INTEGRATED RURAL DEVELOPMENT: THE NEED FOR PRE-SERVICE AND IN-SERVICE TEACHER EDUCATION IN NIGERIA
The need for an integrated pre-service and in-service teacher education in Nigeria is becoming indispensible due to increase in population, security challenges in recent times and teachers’ preference of urban schools to rural schools. Arising from this, it has become necessary to develop a functional and sustainable pre-service and in-service teacher education programme predicated upon the belief that educational provision in rural and remote communities can be sustained from within those communities through teacher education. There is obvious need for public-private sector partnership in educational management to consolidate the scheme. This study seeks to enrich the Nigerian secondary school curricula with an integrated pre-service and in-service teacher education programme. A descriptive research design was adopted to assess two hundred and fifty (250) respondents selected from Cross River State public schools using purposive random sampling technique. The study was guided by three research questions. Two questionnaires titled: “Pre-Service Teacher Education Programme Questionnaire” (PSTEPQ) and “In-Service Teacher Education Programme Questionnaire” (ISTEPQ) were designed, validated and tested with reliability of (0.73). The findings of the study include that: local people in communities are ready to participate in an integrated teacher education programmme; participants in the programme could be equipped and employed within specified communities upon graduation; public-private sector partnership in this instance becomes the key to self-reliance, rural development and sustainability. It was therefore recommended that pre-service teacher education programme should be designed and practiced at the secondary school level of the education system. It was further recommended that curricula content for basic secondary schools in Nigeria should obviously emphasize on integrated pre-service and in-service teacher education programme. Finally, the study emphasized the need to frequently update teachers to be knowledgeable and abreast with contemporary developments and enhance their service delivery to the nation.