General News of Mon, 12 Mar 20185
Free SHS making some parents irresponsible - Former Adisco PTA Chairman
The Parent Teacher Association of Adisadel College has expressed worry about how some parents are hiding under the Free SHS system to shirk their responsibility towards the development of the school.
According to the outgoing PTA chairman of the school, Daniel Owusu Nyampong, many parents have resorted to running to the Ministry of Education and the GES to make one report or the other when voluntary contributions are agreed on by the Association.
Speaking to GhanaWeb on the sidelines of the Speech and Prize Giving Day to mark the 108th anniversary of Adisadel College, the outgoing PTA Chairman noted that if such practice is allowed to continue, running of the schools would become a challenge.
The unwillingness of some parents to contribute towards the development of the Adisadel College and restricting others from contributing their quota to keep the school running according to Mr Nyampong would stifle development if not stopped.
He said, “I must commend the government for introducing the Free SHS. It has come as a welcome relief to a lot of parents who couldn’t have afforded SHS education for their wards. However, the introduction of the Free SHS has come with a bit of confusion over our sources of funds.”
He disclosed that prior to the introduction of the Free SHS system, students were requested to pay an approved amount of GH¢3 as PTA fees which according to him was not enough.
“Basically we have the statutory levy which is fixed by GES and it’s a small amount of GH¢3 per student so we do not make enough from that where we even go into remedial maintenance. So if we’re talking about building new structures, we always look at special levies and then we also look at voluntary financial contributions. As I speak to you now there’s no clear-cut policy on how the special levy; fixing of it, collection of the money, fit into the Free SHS. So I requested GES to liaise with government and come up with a clear-cut policy guideline on how these monies are to be collected.”
Mr Nyampong, however, explained that the school had to introduce a voluntary fund for parents to contribute to support the running of the school following certain financial challenges the school was facing.
“Unfortunately, because we were having difficulties, we introduced a policy of voluntary contributions from parents that we believe did not need any approval from government because it’s voluntary but when we started the collection, I was told that a parent went on GTV to make a complaint that we were collecting a levy. The Regional Directorate of Education came to Adisadel College to stop the collection of the money,” he stated.
Central Regional Minister, Kwamena Duncan called for the teaching profession to be made attractive to many. According to him, the argument about the numbers of teachers making it difficult to improve their lot should not be entertained.
According to him, “there must be a certain attractiveness if you’re talking about the teacher… we need to make it attractive and make the standards attractive and get the best into it”.
Headmaster of Adisadel College, William Kusi Yeboah, praised government for the decision to have students admitted and made to come to school early.
The special guest of honour for the event, Dr Thomas Owusu Mensah presented to the gathering a plan to enhance a multimedia system at Adisadel College. He said he is leading a team to set up a multimedia system with computers to provide modern virtual sceneries to help teaching and learning.
The 108th anniversary of Adisadel College was graced by prominent personalities in the country who trace their root to the school. They pondered on the forward match of the school and how the school was going to keep the fire burning in academics and other major events that are held in and outside the country.