The New Patriotic Party’s campaign promise of introducing a Free Senior High School policy took effect on September 12, 2017 after a successful launch on the premises of the West African Senior High.
Since the programmed rolled out, there have been reported cases of ailing registration processes for first year students, some misplaced to unselected schools of their choice, others being denied boarding packages and over posting of students to schools with infrastructural challenges by the Computerized School Selection Placement System among others.
The policy, despite the hiccups has somewhat received countless number of praise from various personalities in the country and internationally with a simultaneous backlash from many others who have tagged the policy as a strategic tool for the Akufo-Addo administration to secure a second term in the 2020 elections.
A directive from the Ghana Education Service (GES) spelt out that no student is expected to pay a dime to be admitted into a second cycle institution in which he or she has been posted to and failure on the part of school authorities to comply with the directive will come with consequences.
On the back of GES instructions, some authorities seemed to have turned deaf ears to it only to defy it and just 48 hours into the implementation of free SHS policy, two head teachers were relieved of their posts for breaching guidelines on the program which had been communicated to school heads.
More than 300,000 students are expected to benefit from the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government’s flagship program.
The President, Nana Akufo-Addo revealed his government will resort to “proceeds from natural resources” to fund the free Senior High School policy. The policy is to ensure that every student eligible to enter second cycle institution gains admission with free meal and tuition.
With barely three weeks into the 4 years program that launched early this month,
The Minister of Education, Hon. Dr Mathew Opoku Prempeh, barely three weeks into the launch of the program has addressed stakeholders of the flagship programme on the various issues that has warranted some uncertainties about the policy and its sustainability.
In a live video on Facebook dubbed; ‘Free SHS Update Address’, the Minister touched on the discrepancies that has gripped the Free SHS programme and disclosed requisite plans being put in place by his Ministry to rectify all errors and to avert future problems.
Watch Hon. Prempeh’s address below