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Can Ghana survive under this educational system?

We all recall that education is the bedrock for the development of any nation, we also recall that before the arrival of the colonial masters, we had our own form of education which was indeed upstanding, not to say that the colonial masters infiltrated the system, no, but the greatest mistake we ever made as a nation was to throw away what we had, without fully understanding the new concept introduced to us by the white man.

   The right thing we could have done would have been to blend the two systems, to see how they could best fit into our society to help us develop economically, socially, and above all morally.

    Ghana has gone through several educational reforms, without any tremendous outcome, because the system has not been structured and formulated to meet our needs. Hence what we do is cut and paste, which eventually becomes obsolete.

What will enable us to be critical thinkers has been taken out from the educational system, so we have allowed foreigners to do the thinking for us. (I remember during the days of the Rawlings’ revolution when there were no, so call ‘essential commodities’, we found our own methods to meet our needs.) For now, our education system is telling us we can only be consumers but can’t produce, which is very unfortunate.

The system is such that the mechanical engineer could know all the parts of the engine, but when it breaks down, it is the roadside mechanics that repair it.

 One may now ask, what system of education do I think will help enhance the fast development of Ghana I will say the system introduced by President Rawlings the (JSS). This system was based completely on practical activities, the materials needed to propagate education were provided locally. The system enables the students to feel their direct what they’ve been taught in the classroom.  Though it has its own challenges, it could have been sustained if successive governments had continued with that system. 

    The introduction of the (JHS) system was a complete drift from practical-oriented based, to theory-based education. Students’ performances are now based on his/her aggregate, the higher the aggregate, and the smartest the student, the lower the aggregate the less clever the student; hence performance is no longer based on students’ creativity and innovation.

     The worst that has ever happened to our educational system is the ad hoc approach to the introduction of the free SHS system. The concept by itself is laudable, but the implementation is abysmal, it’s not enabling learners to stay enough in school, to be able to achieve the maximum, and it’s not satisfactory for one to take just about nine months to cover all the necessary syllabus, to study medicine to enable him/ her become a good doctor, but this is where we are now.

    The free SHS must be reviewed; parents must be ready to pay for their ward’s accommodation, feeding, and utilities in the boarding house.

The government should take a look again at the private SHS. The track system should be completely abolished because it’s not helping at all.

The government must support private basic schools. I would also encourage parents who will be able to afford to send their wards to private schools to do so, to ease the congestion in the public schools, which is negatively affecting learning activities.

 Public school teachers must all the time be motivated and encouraged. Sad to say between one hundred and fifty to two hundred students are accommodated in each classroom in the public schools, with some schools still running the shift system. This is not the best for the future of Ghana.

   God bless our homeland Ghana.

Dr. Bright Honu      

Vice President Ghana National Association of Private Schools.

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