The Assistant Director of education in-charge of quality and access in the Kassena Nankana West District of the Upper East Region, Justina Chaluru Addi, has expressed the worry about the number of schools still under trees in the district.
Chaluru says the situation is hindering academic work in the area and has thus appealed to corporate bodies, philanthropists and Non-governmental organizations to intervene.
Justina Addi in a Citi News interview disclosed that there are about 14 Basic schools in the district which are under trees and all efforts made to get the assembly to put up classrooms have proven futile.
She said the district lacks trained teachers, teaching and learning materials and other facilities needed to enhance quality teaching and learning.
“We have so many schools under trees in the district. If you go to some of the communities, they suggest that because of the high enrollment they have to create structures for the children but at the end they do not. Currently there are about 14 basic schools under trees in the district and this is affecting academic work.”
“In terms of logistics, we don’t have enough chalk to teach effectively, we have inadequate readers’ and textbooks to teach the pupils hence resulting in poor performance” Addi stated.
Mrs. Addi said as the education directorate continues in its efforts to improve the district’s performance at the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE), it has sanctioned four junior high schools in the district for their abysmal performance at last year’ s BECE to serve as a deterrent to others.
“We have been making progress at the BECE except for the academic year 2014/2015 where four junior high schools, namely Katiu, Nyangolingo and other two Junior high schools, pulled us down. We have investigated the head teachers of those schools for the reasons for the abysmal performance and we realized that, lack of commitment to work on the part of teachers accounted for such bad performances; and so we have sanctioned head teachers of those schools to set their BECE performance targets for 2015/2016 academic year and also write an undertaking for which punitive measures will be taken against them if they fail to meet those targets,” Addi stated.
Mrs. Addi emphasized that unlike other districts with high rate of teenage pregnancy during and after the BECE, the situation in her district is better due to interventions by Non-Governmental organizations in the formation of girl clubs and intense sex education.
She urged parents to invest more in the education of their wards instead of the unnecessary spending on funerals.