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Make The Most Of Free SHS Programme – Professor Yayra Yao Dzakadzie

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Professor Yayra Yao Dzakadzie
Professor Yayra Yao Dzakadzie

Story: Benjamin Makafui Attipoe, Denu, Volta Region

The Director in charge of Tertiary Education at the Ministry of Education (MOE), Professor Yayra Yao Dzakadzie has called on parents and guardians to motivate and encourage their children to take advantage of the free Senior High School (SHS) policy of the government. ‘I get surprised when I hear that some parents deny their children the opportunity to access SHS education at a time when education has been made free for all’, Professor Dzakadzie said.

He was speaking at the 65th Anniversary and Speech and Prize-Giving Day of the St. Paul’s Senior High School and Minor Seminary (SPACO) at Denu-Tokor in the Ketu South Municipality of the Volta Region.

The event, held under the theme of “Improving Access and Quality Senior High Education: The Role of Stakeholders”, was used by the St. Paul’s Old Students’ Association (SPOSA) to launch an Endowment Fund toward the improvement of infrastructure in the school.

He reminded parents, guardians, teachers, heads of schools, old students, parent-teacher associations, and communities that they all have crucial and complementary roles to play in realizing access and the quality objectives of education. “Improving access and quality senior high education is a shared responsibility that requires the commitment and collaboration of all stakeholders. Governments, educational institutions, communities, alumni, and individuals must come together to ensure that no talented student is left behind and every aspiring mind has the opportunity to flourish’, Professor Dzakadzie intimated.

Education, he said, does not only fine-tune students’ creativity, their level of insight, and their analytical skills to address problems but also generally equips students with the necessary tools, and unique ideas in addition to stimulating curiosity, adding that it provides students with opportunities for personal development and enrichment and also better future careers.

The Volta Regional Director of Education, Mr. Francis Yaw Agbemadi, noted that the government and all relevant educational authorities have been playing crucial roles in providing the necessary resources, infrastructure, and policies like the free SHS policy to support educational institutions.

He therefore stressed the need for the Board of Governors, the Alumni, faith-based organizations, community leaders, parents, management and staff as well as students to collectively play a pivotal role in creating a supportive and engaging environment for academic work to thrive for the student body.

The Bishop of the Keta-Akatsi Catholic Diocese, Most Rev. Gabriel Edoe Kumordji (SVD) prompted the students to lift the banner of SPACO by doing the good and right things that can conquer evil, especially in society. He jogged their memory that academic life should not only teach their minds but more importantly touch their hearts and hands to transform and elevate society and preserve the world. ‘This is what will make you self-reliant, an employer and employee as well as a leader in our society’, Bishop Kumordji pointed out.

In a speech read for her, the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Ketu South Constituency, Hon. Dzifa Abla Gomashie, lauded the Catholic Church for continuing to instill good morals into the young ones, adding that these should be continued, not only to protect the Church but also SPACO and the students in general. She pledged her unwavering support and commitment towards the growth and development of SPACO.

The Headmaster of SPACO, Mr. Emmanuel K. H. Dogodzi, said the school has done its best in the last couple of years to ensure that it maintains its academic excellence among the comity of second-cycle schools in the region and Ghana as a whole.

He appealed to corporate Ghana, individuals, and institutions to assist the school with mentorship programmes so the students could be well-equipped for further studies and the world of work.

Mr. Dogodzi was grateful to all the stakeholders who have contributed in diverse ways to push SPACO to achieve its current heights. ‘It is also our prayer that the good people out there would assist us to achieve greater things for the better good of the students we are training and for the larger community’. The Headmaster added.

An old student and Chairman of the Anniversary Planning Committee of SPOSA, Mr. Frank Kofi Ayivor told our news team in an interview that the 65th Anniversary of SPACO was a call for action to his seniors and juniors as well as mates to come to the aid of their alma mater. He used the occasion to appeal to the government to complete some of the stalled infrastructural projects in the school.

The Endowment Fund, which realized a total amount of Ghc71,500 during an appeal for funds at the anniversary durbar, is expected to be supported by the general public and all lovers of SPACO. The Chairman of the Board of Governors of the school, Mr. Larry Kwesi Jiagge, appealed to all and sundry to generously contribute towards such an intended gesture of improving the infrastructural status of the school.

Several teachers and non-teaching staff, some past headmasters, and students were honoured with book prizes, citations, some cash sums, gas cookers, fridges, flat screen television sets, and fridges, all sponsored by the SPOSA.

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