Political influence is the killer of quality education in Ghana – Lecturer

Education Code Conference
Professor Mohammed Hadi Abdul-Ganiy Bolaji

Professor Mohammed Hadi Abdul-Ganiy Bolaji, has observed that political interference in the educational sector has caused more harm than good to Ghana.

Prof Abdul-Ganiy Bolaji, the Foundation Dean, School of Education and Lifelong Learning at SD Dombo University of Business and Integrated Development Studies (SDD-UBIDS), said discontinuing policies on political lines and the formulation of new policies to score political points were some critical issues affecting quality education in the country.

“This practice has brought about frequent changes in education curriculum and the discontinuing of educational projects, which previous governments had implemented.

“These abandoned projects are dotted round in many schools and when they are to be re-awarded on contract, the cost increases above the previous cost and puts a burden on national coffers”, he pointed out.

Professor Abdul-Ganiy Bolaji, who was the guest speaker at the launch of the 30th Annual Conference of the Directors of Education (CODE) held in Wa, said another obstacle hindering quality education was partisan politics.

He said partisan politics had also taken over the formulation of educational policies without the active participation of teachers and parents as critical stakeholders but were always asked to implement them when they were not owners of such policies.

The weeklong Conference was on the theme: “Resourcing of Basic Education in Ghana for quality education delivery.”

It was to create a platform to reflect on the previous year’s performance and also deliberate on quality pre-tertiary education policy and to suggest ways to improve performance and outcomes.

Professor Abdul-Ganiy Bolaji said resource constraints, Infrastructural deficits, access, equity and inclusive issues, teacher motivation and retention policy formulation and implementation as well as geopolitical polarisation among others, were some of the issues affecting quality educational delivery in the country.

He said one other major challenge facing the education sector had been the provision and budgetary allocation, which had been inadequate and minimal and being offset by inflation over the past years.

Professor Abdul-Ganiy Bolaji mentioned the inadequate teaching materials, textbooks, teachers guide to support the implementation of curriculum and to enhance teaching and learning, as some of the challenges undermining quality education in the country.

He said there was a strong interconnection between infrastructure and quality education, especially, the provision of adequate and well-furnished classrooms, and sanitary facilities to help improve teaching and learning outcomes, improve performance and reduce dropout rate in schools.

He said assessing students and focusing on examination performance rather than learning to understand contributed to rote learning among students, which was a defeatist to quality education.

Professor Abdul-Ganiy Bolaji appealed to stakeholders in education to take into consideration the training, motivation and promotion of teachers seriously to improve performance.

“Right now, the promotion structure is problematic and lacks transparency as it is shrouded in favouritism and corruption even though promotion is crucial to quality education delivery”, he said.

Professor Abdul-Ganiy Bolaji urged the leadership of teacher unions to stand firm and solidarize with one another in the larger interest of the members to ward off political intimation and interference.

He, however, said despite the numerous challenges affecting quality education, some tremendous efforts and successes had been recorded in the educational sector, especially regarding quality education.

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