Following reports about the Free Senior High School policy being under review, the Education Ministry Public Relations Officer, Kwasi Kwarteng, has said the policy is not under review.
Speaking on Eyewitness News, Mr. Kwarteng said, “so far as the Ministry of Education is concerned and our agencies are also concerned, discussions of review… have not come to the table of the Ministry or the Minister.”
He however noted that the Ministry is on stand by for any review of the policy if such discussions come up.
“If there comes a time when… that conversation comes up, why not? The ministry will be open to that.”
As things stand, Mr. Kwarteng noted that a decision on the review of the policy will go beyond the Education Ministry.
“It goes beyond the agency. It goes beyond the ministry. It is an entire Ghanaian thing,”
He further maintained that Free SHS was not under financial difficulties, though there are challenges.
“I have always insisted that a lot of these challenges even predated Free SHS,” Mr. Kwarteng said.
He cited challenges with feeding and infrastructure as an example.
“The only components that we are having now, that has erupted this conversation, have to do with the fact that the government is paying for the fees of students.”
The PRO was speaking after the Ghana Education Service (GES) Director-General was reported to have said the Free SHS policy was being reviewed when being interviewed by Joy News.
The Free SHS policy is under scrutiny because of supply challenges with food items.
As Ghana heads to the International Monetary Fund for support, the Free SHS policy is expected to be reviewed.
IMF’s Resident Representative to Ghana, Dr Albert Touna-Mama, assured that the policy will not be cancelled.
But Dr. Touna-Mama acknowledged concerns about the efficiency of the policy and said there need to be conversations about how to make it more sustainable.