General News of Sun, 1 Oct 201720
Free SHS: 4 years duration best policy - Dr. Dasmani
A Senior Lecture of Economics at the University of Cape Coast who was also a Parliamentary Candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) for Prestea Huni-Valley Constituency in 2016 general elections, Dr. Isaac Dasmani has joined the public discourse on whether the SHS should be "3 years or 4 years" duration.
Speaking on Prestea based Energy FM with Nanaba Boakye Ansah, Dr. Dasmani stated categorically that looking at the previous 4-year SHS products under former President John Kufour and the 3-year SHS under former President John Mills that crashed at the universities, the 4-year group shown significant difference in terms of academic year performance.
"In my class, 23 students had first class in the 4-year group, as compared to 4 students who had first class in the 4-year group. With the 3-years duration, majority of them end up with 3rd class, which does not help them very well on the job market", he explained.
As to when the 4-year SHS should be re-introduced, he said, for now, the government has introduced the free SHS policy, so “we should implement the 3-year SHS, address the infrastructure challenges, so that in the next 3years, when these challenges are sorted out, we can think of the 4 years, otherwise, there will be chaos”, he suggested.
Dr. Dasmani rubbished the assertion that, the free SHS will reduce the quality of education in the country. “Are the teachers salary paid from the school fees of children at SHS? No. So why will free SHS reduce the standard of education?"
“I am a beneficiary of free SHS, and I support this policy strongly", he hinted.
Dr. Dasmani, used the opportunity to appeal to parents to take advantage of this pro-poor policy of free SHS and make a paradigm shift towards ensuring their children attend school.
“Education is the only means we can break the poverty cycle”, he stated.