According to the President of NAGRAT, Christian Addae-Poku, Government’s policy of building schools across the country is more for the approval of voters than it is for the benefit of the sector.
“We don’t think it’s prioritized. It’s a lip-service that government pays to education trying to tell everybody that education is a priority. As far as we practitioners are concerned, education is never a priority. If education was a priority, teachers would not be recruited and made to serve for two or three years without a salary. If education was a priority, why are district offices suffering with their subventions in arrears for four years.? If education is a priority, why is government concentrating only on building schools and not on other aspects of the system that will education run on,” he said
“As far as we are concerned, we are playing to the gallery, pleasing the populace by implementing populist policies meant to get votes.”
Pay all arrears in two month or else…
NAGRAT had earlier given government a two-month ultimatum to settle all arrears owed public Senior High Schools and teachers otherwise they will “advise themselves.”
According to NAGRAT, the failure of the government to invest in education had resulted in the declining standards in the sector.
“When government subventions to various directorates are not paid it pacts negatively on all spheres of educational activity. Just as regional and district directorates of education have been starved of funding, we have reasons to conclude that even the Ghana Education Service Headquarters has not been spared. The situation is that bad at all levels but our directors are tight-lipped in voicing their ordeals for fear that they might be victimized,” the President of NAGRAT, Christian Addae-Poku said.
“NAGRAT expects that the issues raised regarding the payment of outstanding subventions to our education offices, payment of all salaries and allowances in arrears owed teachers, the conduct of promotion interviews and promotion of teachers to be fully addressed by the end of October, 2016. The failure of which teachers will advise themselves.”
He called on President John Dramani Mahama to intervene as lack of investment in the Ghana’s educational sector could be detrimental to the country’s developmental agenda
“The plain language is that our education is failing, Our district offices are virtually non-functional and neither the government nor the ordinary citizen can be proud of this. Mr. President we humbly implore you to step in and save this situation,” Mr. Addae-Poku appealed.
NAGRAT blasts gov’t over unsustainable education programmes
The Association also wants government to look beyond introducing social intervention programmes in the education sector, merely to score what it calls cheap political points.
President of the Association, Christian Addae-Poku, argues that government after introducing such programmes, has not been able to provide adequate funding to run and sustain them.
GNAT, NAGRAT, CHASS fight GES
Following weeks of agitations by the Conference of Heads and Assisted Secondary Schools (CHASS), the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) and the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), the Ghana Education Service (GES) announced that it had released some money to cover subsidies which were owed the secondary schools.
CHASS had issued a threat to close down Senior High Schools (SHS) nationwide, following delays by the government in paying the subsidies.
GNAT hinted that, they might declare a nationwide strike in September 2016, if the subsidy arrears of the various second-cycle institutions were not paid.
NAGRAT also insisted that the unions had a say in the matter as the work of the teachers were affected by the situation.
“NAGRAT is not happy with the way things are because we can’t just imagine how you fail to fund education and you still expect education to function well. We are reducing ourselves to mediocrity where people think that whether we have the resources or not, education must go on,” Christian Addae Poku told Citi News at the time.