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20.08.2003 Regional News

MP speaks at school graduation ceremony

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Sogakope (V/R), Aug. 20, GNA - The Member of Parliament and Second Deputy Speaker, Mr Ken Dzirasah has appealed to proprietors of private schools to fix school fees at levels that will meet the pockets of both the poor and rich in society. He urged the school authorities to consider their mission in helping to educate the public as a social responsibility and not only as a commercial venture. Mr Dzirasah was speaking at the first graduation ceremony of the New Age Preparatory School (NAPS) at Tefle-Sokpe near Sogakope in the Volta Region last weekend. The MP called on the Management of Public Schools to create enabling environment for the staff and pupils to maximise their potential and contribute their quota to national development.

He cautioned quarrelsome parents and guardians who take the law into their hands and assault teachers in the classrooms for reprimanding their wards, saying: "The proper upbringing of the child is a collective responsibility of all stakeholders of education." In appreciation of the remarkable success achieved by the school, Mr Dzirasah donated assorted books worth about two million cedis in addition to 200,000 cash for setting up the school library.

The South Tongu District Director of Education, Ms Cecilia Pomary observed that the social cost of educating the increasing number of school-going children cannot be borne by government alone and urged private investors to provide the needed support. She appealed to parents and guardians not to shirk their responsibilities when it comes to the provision of basic needs for the children and payment of fees regularly to sustain the schools they attend. The Chairman of the occasion, Mr Michael Zewu Glover, said ironically, education is considered by many as being expensive but the actual truth is that ignorance is more expensive, he stressed. He argued that whatever wealth parents may acquire and leave behind for their children, it needs to be maintained through knowledge, which is obtained through formal education.

Mr Glover, who is a lawyer and management consultant later donated 500,000 cedis as a seed money to start a library for the school. The New Age Preparatory School, the first of its kind in the South Tongu area was established in 2000 with only nine pupils but has grown to over 300 pupils made up of 170 boys and 130 girls. The Proprietor of the school, Mr Patrick Ametepe appealed to philanthropic organisations, NGOs, the government and all well-meaning individuals to come to the assistance of the school either in cash or in kind.

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