Some Civil Society Organisations and teacher groups have cast a damning verdict of Ghana’s basic education system.
According to the 10 organisations, the current state of Ghana’s educational system coupled with poor financing leaves much to be desired.
The groups in a document titled “Memorandum of Issues in the Basic Education Sector” complained about a myriad of problems including over-overcrowding in some schools.
The groups also lamented that some schools in the country continue to operate under trees, sheds, or dilapidated structures.
The groups also complained about lack of textbooks and exercise books for school children, non-payment of utility bills, lack of incentives for teachers in rural areas, politicisation of recruitment of teachers, among others.
The CSOs and teacher groups also criticised the government’s one student, one laptop initiative.
“Government’s plan to procure 1.3 million laptops to replace textbooks in Senior High Schools across the country does not represent efficient and prioritised use of public funds in the face of a heavily underfunded basic education sub-sector”.
The groups are STAR-Ghana Foundation, ActionAid, Africa Education Watch, Ghana CSOs Platform on SDGs, CAMFED, GNAT, GNECC, CCT, World Vision and ICDP.
The 10 organisations also made a number of recommendations they believe could help revive the country’s educational system if adhered to.
“The government must develop an emergency infrastructure expansion plan for overcrowded urban and peri-urban schools. The Plan must also include a purposive approach to bridging the 25 percent gap between primary and JHS while providing new schools for underserved communities. The government must deploy desks to all the 2.3 million pupils in underserved schools. Partnerships with the Forestry Commission and the private sector should be pursued,” the organisations recommended.
Addressing the media on Thursday, June 15, spokesperson for the organisations, Joyce Larnyo said there will be a better chance of improving the overall quality of education in these schools when their budgetary allocation is increased.
“The government must increase the budgetary allocation to education from the current 12 percent to at least 15 percent of the total national budget using the supplementary budget window and prioritise the disbursement of the allocated discretionary education budget to increase the low budget execution to at least 10 percent by the end of the current financial year,” she stated.
Ms Larnyo further described as absurd the government’s proposed GH¢1.20 per child under the School feeding programme.