No fewer than 17,606 teachers are to sit for the 2020 qualifying examinations billed for November 12 to 14.

The registrar and chief executive, Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria, TRCN, Prof. Josiah Ajiboye, who announced this at a news conference in Abuja, said Osun State tops the list with 1,727 candidates, followed by Adamawa with 1,623 candidates, Nasarawa State with 934 and the FCT with 850 candidates.

He said Jigawa and Ekiti States were, however, excluded from the computer-based examination over their failure to meet the benchmark of 100 candidates per state.

The registrar disclosed that the number of candidates was reduced from over 40,000 as in the previous examination, to 17,606, and the number of batches was also reduced from three to two due to COVID-19 pandemic.

Ajiboye added that the date for the examination had also been staggered to ensure social distancing and compliance with relevant COVID-19 guidelines.

“We organise a minimum of two qualifying examinations in a year. Last year we conducted three batches of examination but because of the COVID-19 pandemic, we made it two batches this year.

“The effect of the pandemic was so much that learning almost ceased, but for the emergency remote learning techniques like radio and television that we adopted.

“When we started the computer based test in 2018 it was as if we knew there was going to be COVID-19 which would change the way teaching and learning is conducted.

“With this development, teachers who are not technology savvy are now focused on learning how to use technology in teaching and we are happy about that,” he said.

The registrar commended the federal government for making concerted efforts to improve teachers’ welfare and assured that TRCN would continue to collaborate with relevant stakeholders in ensuring improved quality of the teachers.

Ajiboye cited Finland as having the best education system in the world because they placed the ‘’learner at the centre of education and the quality of their teachers is top notch,” saying that is what Nigeria should emulate.