President John Dramani Mahama?s campaign promise to make education accessible and progressively free at the second cycle level starting 2015/2016 academic year is on course as the first batch of 50 community day secondary schools are at various stages of completion.
The 50 ultra-modern school blocks, most of which are at the roofing stage, comprise classrooms, state of the art administration block, modern sports arenas and an elaborate drainage system among other things.
The 50 schools are part of a total of 200 new community day SHSs, which were promised by the president to be built across the nation for effective implementation of free secondary education.
This development is in contrast to claims by critics of the Mahama-led National Democratic Congress administration that the President intension to construct 200 secondary schools across and roll out free secondary education was a fa?ade.
In fulfillment of Ministry of Education?s announcement early this year that the first batch of the schools will be completed in August next year, one of the community day schools, at Bamiankor, a suburb of Axim in the Nzema East Municipal Assembly visited by The aL-hAJJ, is at the roofing stage.
Speaking to The aL-hAJJ in an interview, the Municipal Chief Executive for Nzema East, James Atta Kakra Baidoe, said work is steadily progressing on the project, adding that it will be ready for commissioning as scheduled.
While bubbling with smiles, the MCE said the new school will assuage pressure on the only senior high school in the municipality and relief parents of the stress in having to send their wards to other faraway districts and regions for secondary education.
Aside the first batch of 50 schools, parliament recently approved a Financing Agreement between the?Government of Ghana and the International Development Association for the sum of $156 million for the construction of additional 23 schools.
Finance Minister Emmanuel Seth Terkper, also announced during the presentation of the 2015 budget sated ?this budget has also made provision for the next 50? community day secondary schools.
?This means therefore that so far funding has been secured for 123 out of the promised 200 Senior High Schools. We remain confident of meeting our target by 2016 in line with our prudent fiscal policy that all major capital projects must be fully funded before they are started,? the Finance Minister stated.
The building of the Community SHS was a 2012 campaign promise of the ruling National Democratic Congress to enable more Junior High School (JHS) graduates access secondary education.
They are also being built to reduce pressures on existing Senior High Schools (SHS) in the country, which are held to be endowed with facilities and resources conducive for learning.
Some newly created districts also have no senior secondary schools, and students in these places have had to trek long distances to attend school each day.
Source: The Al-Hajj