About 120,000 students would have missed the opportunity to access senior high school (SHS) education this year, but for the government’s free SHS intervention, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, a Deputy Minister of Education, has said.
He made reference to available data, which showed that in excess of 100,000 students annually lost the chance to access SHs education due to financial difficulties, to buttress his assertion.
He said in the Northern part of the country, an average of between eight and 10 per cent of students placed in SHS by the computerized school selection system was unable to pursue their education because of the existence of feeding grant.
The average figure for the Southern part was, however, between 30 to 35 per cent and he attributed this to inability of the parents to pay the school fees.
Dr. Adutwum was speaking to journalists on the sidelines of a two-day workshop for members of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Education in Koforidua.
It provided the platform to update the Committee on the operations of the Education Ministry and its agencies.
He indicated that the free SHS was not only about access, but quality and equity – to ensure a more robust education system.
Dr. Adutwum said this was being done through the combination of effective supervision, curriculum review and professional development.
They were determined to go the extra mile to make sure that senior high school administration was run properly and more efficiently.
“That a school should record 70 per cent failure at an examination should not be countenanced by anyone” he added.
He gave the assurance that the Secondary Education Improvement Project (SEIP), started by the previous government would be continued to help improve the quality of teaching and learning.
Mr. Enoch Cobbinah, Chief Director of the Ministry, said priority had been placed on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education.
The teacher training curriculum would also be reformed to adequately prepare the teachers to enhance classroom performance.