Former President John Dramani Mahama has lampooned Akufo Addo led government for destroying the quality of Education in Public Second Cycle Schools with poorly implemented Free Senior High School Education.
According to Mr. Mahama, at the Secondary School level, Public Schools are known to provide quality education hence most parents prefer admitting their Children in public Senior High Schools to private Schools but believes the haphazard implementation of the Free SHS policy by government will “destroy the quality of our Secondary Education in the long term”.
“At first Basic School education was not the best hence parents preferred admitting their children in private Schools, but at the Secondary level everybody wants to admit his child in Public Secondary School because at that level Public Senior High Schools are better than the Private Schools. You talk of Adisadel, Wesley Girls, Mfantsipem, Achimota, PRESEC among others but what is currently happening in our Secondary school education, it will destroy the quality of our Secondary Education. That is the long term effect”.
Mr. Mahama said this when he addressed delegates of the opposition National Democratic Congress in New Juaben North Constituency as part of his tour of the Eastern Region which ended Friday.
The Free SHS policy being provided by government has been bedeviled with infrastructural challenges which has led to congestion forcing government to introduce double track system to ameliorate the situation. That notwithstanding, the government is also struggling to shore up the programme with regular funding as well as the needed human resources. Recently, Parents Teachers Associations in the Country raised red flags over poor quality of teaching by personnel recruited under Nation Builders Corps (NABCo) to assist education at the second-cycle level.
Mr. Mahama believes these would have long term negative affect for which he says ” it will get to a point people will send their children to Private Secondary Schools instead of Public Secondary because of the poor quality of Education”.
He said currently parents are spending about Gh400 a month on extra classes for their children who are to spend about three months home as a result of the double track system which he says defeats the purpose of the Free SHS Policy.
He reiterate that NDC government will review the Free SHS policy and make it robust, complete the 200 community Day School to provide enough accommodations and subsequently abolish the double track system.
“When I said this at Trade Fair, they went out there to say I will cancel Free SHS that is not true. I will never cancel Free SHS because as someone who understands the importance of Education I will never cancel Free SHS. What I said was that, I will cancel the double track system to enable students get enough time with their Teachers”.