Ghana: SHS to Remain Free for All... As Govt Rejects Suggestions for Rich Parents to Pay Fees for Wards

11 February 2019

The government has rejected the public suggestion to allow parents who can afford to pay tuition for their wards admitted under the Free Senior High School (SHS) Policy, Minister of Education, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, has disclosed.

He said although the government acknowledged the financial burden associated with the SHS policy, it would not relent on its promise to make secondary education free for all Ghanaians.

"Secondary education would continue to be free for both the rich and the poor since no child admitted into public school would be allowed to pay for tuition," he said.

The Minister said this last week Friday at the Danquah Institute Leadership Series held on the theme "World class education and imperative for the next generation of leaders."

The Leadership Series seek to bring together especially, exceptional Ghanaian leaders who have inspired, transformed and changed the African continent through values of individuals, rule of law, multiparty democracy and free enterprise.

The Education Minister said plans were underway to expand infrastructural facilities in 275 secondary schools running the double track system under the policy, noting "government is committed to bring to a halt the double track system as soon as possible."

Dr Opoku Prempeh said the government had also adopted the UNESCO benchmark document on Comprehensive Teacher Policy (CTP).

The policy he explained was aimed at addressing all problems of teachers including recruitment, deployment, retention, remuneration, promotion and professional development.

"We hope that by the close of the year the policy will be implemented as part of the educational strategic plan to make teaching and learning quality for Ghanaians.

"But we have to be professional with teaching; in every profession it is not the university that makes them part of that profession, so teachers, the largest profession in the country, necessarily have to write licensing examination before being recruited," Dr Prempeh said.

The Minister said very soon all the 46 Colleges of Education would be affiliated to the five public universities in the country, since almost all of them were now offering courses in teacher education.

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