Papa Owusu Ankomah, Minister of Education, Science and Sports, on Saturday said the government was preparing to launch and implement new education reforms by September this year. This was contained in an address read for the Minister by Mrs Rebecca Dadzie, Western Regional Director of Education, at the Founders and Awards Day of Fijai Secondary School at Sekondi.
Papa Ankomah said the reforms if implemented would enable the country meet its developmental goals and aspirations, socio-economic needs of the society and responsive to the rapidly changing technologically and information driven global economy.
He also said among other policy objectives of the reforms, there would be a significant expansion of the number of institutions offering second cycle courses.
Papa Ankomah said senior secondary schools and technical and vocational education training institutions would have to adapt to such new policy to enable them offer comprehensive education.
He said technical and vocational structured apprenticeship system would be established under the reforms, adding that a structured 4-year apprenticeship system would be developed to provide practical and theoretical training.
Papa Ankomah said, "Government would soon roll out a programme to identify all employers who will be capable of providing apprenticeship so as to provide a uniform training standards under the reforms". He said the government's avowed goal of upgrading educational institutions and building a model secondary school in each district is on course.
Papa Ankomah said the work on the first 31 schools being considered under the first phase of model school project, was almost complete and would soon be commissioned nationwide.
He said work on 25 schools, under the second phase of the programme have been awarded on contract.
Papa Ankomah said government made available 129.4 billion cedis as Capitation Grant for the 2005/06 academic year and this figure increased to 160 billion cedis for the 2006/07 academic year.
Papa Ankomah said government intended to provide buildings to about 1400 schools, identified two years ago as organising classes under trees.
He said consequently, the District Assemblies would be urged to give priority to the construction of schools in areas where basic schools organised classes under trees and dilapidated structures. Mr. Anthony Evans Amoah, Western Regional Minister, advised students to study hard and not to depend on juju or occultism to pass their examinations.
He said, "Juju and occultism cannot let you pass your examinations so you should not give sacrifices to innocent gods".
Mr. James Hamiliton-Rhule, Headmaster of the School, said the vision of the educational institution was to develop the personality of the individual and to make him or her socially useful.
He said the main problem of the school was the lack of security and explained that the compound had many outlets and inlets. Mr. Hamiliton-Rhule said last term, a student was abducted for five days and was brought back by his abductors looking very ill and unconscious.
The Day, which was under the theme "Provision of Quality Education-A truly shared responsibility" formed part of the 55th anniversary celebration of the school.