There is an African saying that: “Teachers’ reward is in heaven” which simply means the reward for teachers’ daily sacrifice, toil and hard work in shaping the minds and lives of the future leaders of the society can never be adequately rewarded in monetary terms.
Instead, it can only be rewarded in heaven, impliedly by God himself; considering its sheer magnitude.
But one man is saying no to this!
Dr. Donald Peterson believes that Teachers should get their rewards here on earth and also in heaven.
He believes that teachers are the bedrock of any society, for it is undeniable that behind most successful men and women in our society, there are some great teachers!
Thus, teaching is more than a profession; it is the mother of all occupations on earth.
A teacher is like a potter who delicately shapes young impressionable minds and molds them into great, independent and confident characters.
When the President and founder of D- Peterson Foundation, Dr. Donald Peterson made this pledge sometime last year to the Teachers in Ika South of his intention to host and thank them in December 2020, to some it was just like one of those political statements; while others see it as something that is not doable.
How can an individual singlehandedly sponsor such an event?
For Dr. Donald Peterson and members of his Foundation, it has always been heartfelt desires to support and compliment the efforts of our SMART working Governor, His Excellency, Senator Dr Arthur Ifeanyi Okowa.
20th December 2020 came, the premises of Igumbor Otiku Secondary School wore spectacular new look as all categories of teachers in Ika South and their retirees were treated to a feast and the following deserving teachers were awarded cash prizes:
BEST PRINCIPALS CATERGORY: First, Mr. Memeh Chuks Monday, Dein Palace Secondary School, Agbor. First position, cash prize of One Hundred and Twenty Thousand Naira (#120,000). Second.Mrs. Jibuno F.C., Alindinma Secondary, Agbor Alindinma. Second position, cash prize of One Hundred Thousand Naira (#100,000).Third.Mrs. Ogbuagu-Asemota E.G., Ogbemudien Model Secondary School, Agbor. Third position, cash prize of Seventy Thousand Naira (#70,000).
BEST SECONDARY SCHOOL TEACHERS CATEGORY: First, Mrs. Adagonyin M.O., Ime-Obi Secondary School, Agbor. First position, cash prize of Ninety Thousand Naira (#90,000). Second, Mr. John Waruaha –Waru, Abavo Secondary School, Abavo. Second position, cash prize of Seventy Thousand Naira (#70,000).Third.Mr. Okenye Dickson, Jegbefume Secondary School, Abavo. Third position, cash prize of Fifty Thousand Naira (#50,000)
BEST HEAD TEACHER CATEGORY:First. Mrs. Ilechie Joy, Charles Burr Primary School, Agbor. First position, cash prize of One hundred and Twenty Thousand Naira (#120,000). Second. Comrade Mrs. Odigwe Victoria, Uweifo Primary School, Ewuru. Second position, cash prize of One Hundred Thousand Naira (#100, 000). Third. Mrs. Aputu Tina Ngozi, Ekwuoma Primary School, Abavo. Third position, cash prize of Seventy Thousand Naira (#70,000)
BEST PRIMARY SCHOOL TEACHERS CATEGORY: First, Comrade Alika Ekele Jude, Alifekede Primary School, Alifekede. First position, cash prize of Ninety Thousand Naira (#90,000). Second. Mrs. Eghomie Tessy, Odili Primary School, Agbor. Second position, cash prize of Seventy Thousand Naira (#70,000). Third. Comrade Mrs. Ewubor Bose, Nosiere Primary School, Agbor. Third prize, cash prize of Fifty Thousand Naira (#50,000)
In his welcome address, Mr. A. O. Eze, The Chief Inspector of Education, Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education, Ika South Local Government Area, he said it was a dream come true when Dr. Donald Peterson; through his Foundation offered to celebrate all Ika South teachers in Public Primary and Secondary schools irrespective of affiliations as it is done at the State level.
He also thanked the various groups like NUT, ASUSS, ANCOPSS and AOPSHON for cooperating with the committee in selecting the awardees. He further stated, that each group was requested to nominate their best 6 to cut across the entire Local Government Area and forward to the committee for screening, after which three persons were selected for each category.
He concluded by commending D-Peterson Foundation for the sponsorship of the ceremony.
In a related development, the Zonal Director, Post Primary Education Board, Agbor, Mrs. Frederick, P.C. (ESQ), in her speech, she said “this award ceremony been sponsored by D-Peterson Foundation is the first of its kind in Ika South, this shows that teacher’s reward is no longer in heaven alone but now on earth and I eulogize Dr. Donald Peterson for conceiving this idea and taking up proactive steps to actualize same”
Hon Andrew Agwaze, Chief of Staff, D-Peterson Foundation and currently, Special Assistant to the Executive Governor of Delta State on Youth matters who led members of the Foundation (Hon Smart Jegbefume, Ewere Okonta, Hon Ignatius Agboile and Hilary Nmoyem) to the ceremony, in his speech; he promised the teachers that the event will be an annual ceremony and that next year event will be more colourful and more embracing to accommodate more awardees.
“D- Peterson Foundation will partner with the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education to organize computer training programme for the teachers, by 2021.
We will also train 1000 students virtually on Python Programming language software”
He concluded by saying, the main motive behind the sponsorship is just to thank and appreciate the teachers in Ika South for being the incubators of human learning.
Highlights of the ceremony were the presentations of award to the awardees.