Professor Jane Naana Opoku-Agyeman, the Minister of education, has expressed worry about the current abuse of the educational protocol, regarding the admissions of students into senior high schools.
She said the massive abuses of the protocol is creating problems both for the Ministry as well as the Ghana Education Service (GES), and undermining the smooth implementation of the Computerised School Selection and Placement System (CSSPS).
Prof Opoku-Agyeman raised the concern at the closing ceremony of a GES stakeholder review workshop in Accra.
She said there was the need for a stakeholder dialogue, to agree on the prescribed qualification for beneficiaries of the protocol.
She said the current situation is unacceptable and undermines efforts being made to ensure quality, equity and fairness in the educational system.
The Minister said she is worried because the huge number of protocol list from certain institutions, make it impossible for other students, who have gone through the genuine process of the CSSPS to gain admission.
She said the act is not fair at all, especially to the underprivileged in the society. “I am of the view that we should allow every child to be placed in school after their exams based on merit instead of being aided due to one reason or the other.
“Otherwise the poor may not have the opportunity of changing their situations, neither would the affluent learn good lessons in life,” she said.
She said the protocol, must cover just a few special cases, particularly the underprivileged, and not a host of students who sometimes even fail to meet the mark and requirement of the schools.
Prof Opoku-Agyeman expressed the need for transparency in the CSSPS. She said a dialogue has started to find a sustained solution to the challenges of the CSSPS, to help reduce the stress on the institutions as well as on parents and students.
She said the Ministry is hopeful that the partnership with the key stakeholders, which includes Heads of Senior High Schools, Educationists, CSSPS Processors and Coordinators, representatives of Parent Teacher Associations and Old Student’s Associations.
“We also need to also improve the quality of more schools to make them attractive to students and parents,” she said.
Prof Opoku-Agyeman called for the strengthening of supervision, improved school leadership, enhanced support by Parents, Teacher Associations, as well as Old Students Groups, as is being done by the schools referred to as “endowed”.
Prof Akwesi Ameyaw Asabere, the Chairman of the Ghana Education Council, said all the concerns raised and contributions made by the participants have been well noted, and they would be worked on, to ensure that a good consensus is reached for quality and high standards in education. –