General News of Sun, 28 Jan 201818
Weed out unqualified students or face consequences - Ministry warns university colleges
The Ministry of Education has directed private university colleges to do “self-auditing” to ensure that the right students are admitted before it cracks the whip on those that are guilty.
Minister of State in charge of Tertiary Education, Prof. Kwesi Yankah, who gave the directive, said an ongoing audit report on randomly selected private university colleges in the country revealed a disturbing and an embarrassing state.
He said even though the academic auditing was still ongoing, the report had indicated that 20 per cent of students admitted by the private university colleges did not provide information as to whether they even wrote the WASSCE, “not to talk of whether they got the required grades.”
Flouting laid down rules
Speaking at a forum in Accra for managers of private university colleges yesterday, Prof. Yankah said there were cases of irregularities in admission requirements right through to examination malpractices.
He said, for instance, there were cases of candidates admitted to private university colleges on whom there were no records of their West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) results on file.
Prof. Yankah said there were instances of candidates admitted with grades E8 and even F9, adding that, that was a practice such institutions had been perpetuating because nobody had cracked the whip on them.
He said there were also cases of students with certificates from unaccredited institutions being admitted and also cases of students with foreign certificates, not certified by the National Accreditation Board (NAB), being admitted.
Prof. Yankah described the outcome of the ongoing auditing as also defeating the crusade of government that “this is a country of integrity with a highly qualified human resource base.”
He said one way out was for the private university colleges themselves to undertake, “self-pruning and self-cleansing.”
“Check your records and if you realise that some students are not properly admitted, get rid of them. If you wait for us to come, the consequences would be disastrous for the very existence of that university,” Prof. Yankah warned.
He said the government was not ready to compromise on standards in education and would, therefore, not endorse mediocrity.
“Go three years back and check. Students you have admitted with F9 and E8, get rid of them,” he directed, warning further that if an external authority was forced to do the auditing and such records were found, it would be terrible for the guilty institutions.
He told the managers of private university colleges that they had been given the first-hand option to do self-auditing to ensure that no such students were admitted and also to ensure that no such students applied for admission, before they matriculated their students.
Prof. Yankah said the NAB would continue the academic auditing to ensure that all private universities were following laid down regulations.
He said it was required that, “you subject yourselves to self-censorship”, adding that the final outcome of the report would be disastrous for the defaulting universities as their names would be splashed in the newspapers.
Prof. Yankah noted that the impact of such a move would be unimaginable for the affected universities as it would have implications for their subsequent admissions.