The Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.) in Basic Education sandwich programme run by the Institute of Education of the University of Cape Coast (UCC) does not take teachers out of the classroom during school hours, the Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Dominic D. Kuupole, has said.
He explained that the programme is run during vacation and is intended to eliminate the perception about teacher absenteeism which had been erroneously linked with teachers enrolling on programmes of study while schools are in session.
The Vice Chancellor said this on Thursday at the 47th Congregation of the University in Cape Coast during which 2, 604, representing 93% from the first batch of students to be enrolled to pursue the programme, graduated.
Out of the number, 26 had first class honors, 334 had second class upper division, 788 had second class lower division, and 864 had third class and 595 passed.
He stated that other reasons for the introduction of the programme in July 2011 was to give an opportunity to teachers outside Cape Coast and its environs, who due to distance could not enroll on the evening classes, to acquire a degree.
Prof Kuupole said when the programme was introduced, the university received 4486 applications from qualified applicants but out of the number, 3545 made up of 1852 females and 1693 males were offered admission.
He said 2,804 made up of 1,500 females and 1304 males enrolled and pursued the programme adding that the programme had no doubt opened an avenue for many teachers who otherwise could not have gained direct admission to UCC.
Prof. Kuupole said Early Childhood education was introduced to the programme in 2013 to provide an opportunity for those who hold diplomas in early childhood from colleges of education to upgrade themselves.
The Vice Chancellor said the programme, which was initially held at five centres, had now been extended to 10 centers across the country and constantly monitored by Faculty members from the university as well as officials from the National Council of Tertiary Education (NCTE) and the Teacher Education Division of the Ghana Education Service.
He said the introduction of the sandwich programme was in line with the mission of UCC which was constantly seeking alternative ways to respond to changing needs and that it would continue to make university education accessible to a large number of qualified students who cannot be admitted into the conventional systems due to lack of space at UCC or the demands of their jobs.
Prof Kuupole expressed gratitude to the Centre coordinators and course tutors as well as principals of the colleges that hosted the programmes for making the facilities in their Colleges available to the university.
He urged the graduating students to contribute their quota to the improvement of Basic education in the country as well as exhibit high sense of dedication and commitment to duty when they get the opportunity to assume higher responsibility as leaders in the education industry.
The Overall best graduating student, Mr. Atta Aduening Kuffour in his valedictory address, urged his colleagues to be guided by the principles UCC had imparted to them and appealed to the school to present their certificate to them on time.
Mr. Kuffour, who had a CGPA of 3.75, had GHC5, 00.00 and in addition will work with the Institute of Education as a research assistant as well as receive its support to pursue a post graduate programme.
Cash awards were presented to eight other deserving graduating students.