“Conditions under which we study here is not conducive at all. We don't even have computers for the ICT course which is a core subject…our school is like a primary school but we all go through the same secondary cycle of education as those in the cities do…” Above is a stated plight of a form three (3) student of Atwima Kwanwoma Senior High School Trede, Kumasi.
Sometimes I sit down to ponder and ask myself plethora of questions; is education really a priority in Ghana and is it also a priority to those in authority? Do the various governments and stakeholders value education at all? Is it a case that, when you lament on issues of education only the birds flying in the air hear you and join in your chorus? And why do such issues struggle to get national attention? Your guess is as good as mine.
Some one will be wondering why all these questions…it is pathetic to note that there are still Senior High Schools in Ghana and particularly in Ashanti region that lack the basic secondary school facilities of which Atwima Kwanwoma Senior High School is no exception. This senior high school is located in Trede, not more than fourteen (14) kilometers away from Kumasi city (thus on Kumasi-Bekwai road). The school is in the Atwima Kwanwoma District Assembly. The sad part is that a lot of Junior High Schools can boast of facilities than this particular Senior High School.
The Headmistress of the school Madam Elizabeth Osei is doing all she can in her power to raise funds to develop the school but her efforts are just a little fraction of the whole. It is sad to note that, even though the Senior High School is government-assisted and also regulated by the Ghana Education Service (GES), the support from the government to develop the school is not forthcoming. The Senior High School (SHS) can only boast of a six classroom block (for all forms thus form 1 to form 4) and an old library that has now been converted to an administration block. With the help of the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) they are putting up another three classroom block to augment the number of classrooms. Since they have not been able to complete the classrooms, most of the classes are done under trees. Atwima Kwanwoma SHS has only two computers, there is no staff common room for teachers, and their common room is under the trees. “The school has no dining hall and a kitchen. Atwima Kwanwoma SHS can not even boast of a boys or girls dormitory, the problems here are beyond our control, we have able and active teachers who are willing to give their best, but our facilities are very bad, insufficient and not conducive for proper studies ” the headmistress lamented. She added that they will be very grateful if they get a helping hand from philanthropist, NGOs and the corporate body at large. “We will not hesitate to name the facility or project after anyone who helps us”…says Madam Elizabeth Osei
The nation's Vice President, His Excellency John Dramani Mahama announced that the government of Ghana would spend $250 million to establish 200 new community senior high schools within the next four years when he launched the Green Book II in Accra. I wish therefore to also make this plea to the Vice President of Ghana that whilst they embark on this laudable 200 new community SHS establishments, attention be given to such dilapidated and existing institution. These are matters that require the generous attention of all that consider national development a must since education is the major key towards National development.
By: Adjei Kwame M.