The number of female students gaining admission to Senior High Schools in the Ashanti Region has seen significant increase over the last four years, the Ghana Education Service (GES) has said.
Ms Mary Owusu Afriyie, the Regional Director of Education, said a major factor to the increase was the implementation of the Free Senior High School (SHS) programme.
The Nana Akufo-Addo-led administration initiated the free SHS policy to make secondary education accessible to all Ghanaian youth, in line with the Sustainable Development Goal Four (4), which seeks to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education for all.
Ms Owusu Afriyie, speaking at the inauguration of a 12-unit classroom block at the Kumasi Anglican SHS, said per the GES’ statistics, the Region recorded 97,977 female students’ enrolment out of 202,845 total student enrolment for the 2016/2017 academic year.
In the 2017/2018 academic year, the number of female students increased to 110,216 out of the total enrolment of 225,809, while the figure shot up to 130,342 out of 264,773 in the 2018/2019 academic year.
The 2019/2020 academic year saw 142,853 females being enrolled out of 288,811 total student enrollment.
Ms Owusu Afriyie described the steady growth in female enrolment as encouraging, explaining that it would help promote the country’s agenda of achieving gender equality and women empowerment.
She advised students to be disciplined at all times, saying they should strictly abide by the COVID-19 safety protocols to stay safe of the disease.
The Kumasi Anglican SHS, one of the model schools in the Ashanti Region, has seen considerable increase in students’ enrolment following the double-track system, necessitated by the Free SHS Programme.
The 12-unit block, constructed by Messrs Asumadu Construction and funded by the Ghana Education Trust Fund, under the ‘Emergency SHS Projects,’ is to create a conducive environment for teaching and learning.
Ms Owusu Afriyie expressed the hope that the newly-inaugurated facility would contribute significantly to reducing pressure on the school.
Reverend Canon Senkyiri, the Headmaster of the School, commended the Government for providing the new block to ease congestion.