MINISTER of State in-charge of Tertiary Education, Professor Kwesi Yankah, has stated categorically that the constant policy swings in the educational sector in connection with the implementation of the Senior High School (SHS) educational system by successive governments that was not based on evidence of outcomes of the previous final examination results of secondary schools could be dangerous for Ghana’s economic growth and development.
According to him, many of Ghana’s SHS students were unable to perform well in the previous West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSE) due to the constant swings of the educational reform policy after change of successive governments.
Prof Yankah minced no words in stressing the need for the consolidation of interventions of partnership and collaboration between the ministry of education and stakeholders in the education sector.
He held the view that the relative swings in SHS educational policy without evidence database are adversely affecting the government of Ghana efforts to sustain education transformation agenda.
“I have been lamenting about the constant swings in SHS educational sector reforms policy from one government to the other.
The report of Professor Jophus Anamuah-Mensah Educational Reforms Review Committee presented in 2002 to former President John Agyekum Kufuor also recommended the three-year academic period for SHS education.
But the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) under Prof John Evans Atta-Mills came and swung the SHS education to four years.
“Even when the outcomes of the four years of the SHS education policy has been noticed, the other government for which he referred to as government ‘B’ comes and swung it back to three years regardless of the outcomes of the four years period as if determining ahead of the times that when we come and attend and we win the elections we are going to swing it back to three years for which we are comfortable with.
He pointed out that evidence gathered from his research conducted showed that the best outcomes of the WASSE results of the SHS students were during 2011, 2012 and 2013.
He stated that the WASSE results during these periods were good to the extent where even students did very well in the most stranded subjects like Integrated Science and Elective Mathematics.
He was referring to the decision being taken by the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) government to swing the three years period of the SHS educational policy being implemented by then former President John Agyekum Kufuor-led New Patriotic Party (NPP) government to four years.
Prof Yankah, therefore, stated that per the factual evidence database available to him in regard to the performance of final students of SHS in the years between 2006 and 2019, the outcomes of the results by the students under the three years period were largely much better than four years.
He made the statement at an educational sector stakeholders’ engagement in Accra on Thursday, August 8, 2018 to mark the second National Education Week (NEW) held in Accra.
The annual event—which was organised by the Ministry of Education—offered stakeholders the platform to assess education sector performance and make recommendations for improvement.
The four-day event on the theme: “Reforming The Education Sector for Effective Service Delivery: Embracing Innovations,” brought focus to the reform agenda, and highlighted the importance of innovative and creative ways of working in the education sector.
It also signalled the ministry’s intention to work with stakeholders in adapting proven measures that would accelerate the pace of progress in the education sector.
For his part, Minister of Education, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, stated that the government will continue with its bold resolve to transform the education sector and prepare the Ghanaian child to compete with the best globally.
He, therefore, called on the relevant stakeholders to offer practical suggestions for innovations that could be adopted to bring about necessary changes and results for the education sector.
Story: Freeman KORYEKPOR AWLESU
Writer’s email: email@example.com