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19.01.2012 Education

Woyongo Worried About Performance Of Pupils In Last Year's BECE

By Alhandu Abdul-Hamid - Daily Graphic
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The Upper East Regional Minister, Mr Mark Owen Woyongo, has expressed concern about the performance of pupils in last year’s Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) in the Upper East East region and called for the development of strategies to improve the performance and quality of education in the region.

He noted that out of a total of 13,688 candidates presented in last year’s BECE examination in the region, only 4,836 candidates representing 35.3 per cent obtained the qualifying grades of between aggregates 6 and 30.

This situation, he indicated, was very disturbing to parents and other stakeholders, noting the consequences for this was that those who did not gain admission into senior high and technical schools may equally not have any vocational or entrepreneurial training.

'The implication is that there will be teaming unemployed youth in the country and consequently increase in crime waves. There is therefore an urgent need to develop well thought out strategies to improve on the performance and quality of education in the region'.

The Upper East regional minister expressed these concerns at a meeting of Retired Directors of Education in Bolgatanga in the Upper East region to deliberate on the falling standards of education in the region and how they could collaborate with stakeholders to help improve on standards.

Mr Woyongo said even though there were some problems inhibiting the successful delivery of education in the country such as insufficient educational infrastructure and inadequate text books, human factor was a major contributor to the problem.

In spite of all the 38 Colleges of Education in the country churning out thousands of teachers every year, he said the supply could not match the demand, adding that a lot of people who entered the teaching profession used that as a stepping stone for more perceived lucrative professions.

It was for this reason, he noted that the government had introduced the SSSS aside introducing other incentives to make the teaching profession attractive.

'Let me remind you that the teaching profession is a noble one and therefore cannot be compared with others. This is because education is normative and its content is the culture of the people. It is education which transmits the peculiar accumulated knowledge and values from one generation to the other for the survival, maintenance and improvement of our collective life'.

Mr Woyongo urged the retired directors as former managers of education, to use their past training and accumulated experience to help resolve the issues that retarded education in the region, saying 'If we accept the fact that the youth of today will be the leaders of tomorrow, we cannot but get involved to stem the downward trend in the educational enterprise. We shall not be comfortable in our graves if we do not bequeath this country to a disciplined and well-educated generation'.

He said the government had done a lot to enhance educational delivery in the region, citing the construction of more than 150 projects including dormitories, classroom blocks, assembly hall and laboratories in addition to the increase in the capitation grant, the retargeting and expansion of the school feeding programme and the distribution of free exercise books and school uniforms to pupils in deprived schools.

The Upper East Regional Director of Education, Mr Paul Apanga, called for collaborative efforts between the retired directors of education and the Ghana Education Service (GES) as well as stakeholders in the education sector to help find solutions to problems bedeviling the falling standards of education in the region.

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