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General News Fri, 15 Jan 1999

Take active interest in child development - Minister

Accra (Greater Accra), 15 Jan. '99 - Mr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, Minister of Education, today asked parents who have wards in Junior Secondary Schools (JSS) to take active interest in their development in order to make their selection into Senior Secondary Schools (SSS) less cumbersome. The Minister said in Accra that there seems to be mistrust between parents and school authorities concerning selection of candidates into the SSS system. "There is a laid down procedure for entry into SSS. 'If parents get involved with school authorities during the filling of forms for entry into SSS, they will find that getting the right kind of school for their children will not be a problem''. He noted that many parents unfortunately fail to do this and therefore end up choosing schools for their wards which they are unable to gain admission to. Under the procedure, children, through their parents, fill the SSS entry forms, select three schools of their choice that match with three programmes run by the school of their choice and match the codes provided. Mr Spio-Garbrah said the mission of the Ministry and the GES is to get each child a place in one of the 464 government assisted schools or the 117 private secondary schools approved by the GES for the SSS programmes. He added that there are also a number of technical and vocational institutions from which they could benefit. ''There is some expansion going on in certain schools with new ones coming up in the regions'', but added that there is a limit to what government can do. Mr Spio-Garbrah appealed for co-operation from parents during such exercises, saying "we appreciate their anxiety, but they need to cooperate with school authorities to enable them find convenient placements for their wards''. The Minister asked parents to report heads of SSS who take money from them with promises to secure places for their children.

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