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The assertion that coronavirus is a necessary evil to the educational system in Ghana

Thu, 11 Jun 2020 Source: Atuahene Ahmed

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) is not the first or second pandemic to hit humanity, perhaps it may be the first most of us as Ghanaians have witnessed.

Every pandemic noticeably put many sectors, especially the business entities in a state of crawling, and we can all testify to the crisis of COVID-19 on business and various sectors as they snail to achieving their set target.

With a quick glance at the educational system in Ghana, ‘the assertion that COVID-19 is a necessary evil to the educational system in Ghana’ is neither true nor false.

We must carefully evaluate every atomic unit of Ghana’s Educational System, so shall we not be prejudicial in authenticating the above statement as being relatively true or false.

In the first place, what is the true meaning of education? Education in its holistic form could be seen as giving students the necessary skills needed to succeed in this world and helping them grow the confidence to practice those skills. However, education before the 21st century is apprehended to differ largely from the current ways and means of educating individuals and societies at large, and the key factor is the advancement in technology.

In Ghana, our politicians have and continue to work dismally to disappoint our educational system and the saviour could be ‘Angel COVID-19’.

Subjectively, COVID-19 is an Angel who descended from the Heavens in a Satanic form to save Ghana and the entire world from the indigenous and cruel ways of doing certain things, ranging from Ministries to Organizations.

Ghana since time memorial has twisted the act of schooling and education. The great Albert Einstein simply defined education as what is remained in one’s mind after he is out of the classroom. To further expatiate this statement, education must as a necessity focus on the knowledge and skills acquisition, but not just the mere wearing of school uniforms and carrying bags full of books into the classroom.

Further away from personalizing the issues of Ghana’s Educational System, if we could cling to technology and host most of the things we do in school all in the name of education online, Ghana would not have a shameless Association like Unemployed Graduate Association of Ghana.

Why do I say this? If it so happens, every student would be engaged in other activities and businesses, because they would have time to execute them other than staying in school and doing things of less importance aside going for lectures and other few necessary activities. With this, graduates will come out of school and would not only hope for the government to employ them, since they already have side business and activities that earn them with some income for living.

Aside this, the practicality of education in acquiring Knowledge and skills in Ghana is devalued. It rather focuses on memorizing and sense of who-beats-who in examination. This arose the old statement ‘chew pour pass and forget’. So I question this statement; chewing and pouring what, and passing and forgetting what? In simply put, it means memorize and write it during examination so you can pass and then forget it afterward.

If so, then most graduates passing through the Ghana Educational System do not fit into Albert Einstein’s definition of education as stated above. The competition in examination should be disregarded. We must stay home in our comfort zones in most cases to be given assignments and tests online, so we can query the internet for substantial information which are very accurate to the subject matter, but not just skimming through lecture slides in school just to pass examination.

This would give students the task to do a lot of research works and by so doing, the knowledge is able to stick afterwards. This is what explains the great philosophy; ‘if I listen I forget if I watch I remember, but if I do it becomes part of me forever’.

Inasmuch as the above points clearly glorify COVID-19 as an Angel to teach Ghana for an immediate shift in her Educational System, it only could be seen as evil to our education sector on a single ground, and that is we do not have the full capacity to engage in education online, for we are under resourced when it comes to technology.

However, we hope for our politicians to see what we the ‘ordinary’ Ghanaians see to enable us better our Educational System in post-COVID-19.

Columnist: Atuahene Ahmed

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