20.05.2004 Regional News

Teachers warned against demanding fees for extra classes

20.05.2004 LISTEN

Anomabo, May 20, GNA - The Mfantseman District Chief Executive, Mr. Robert Quainoo-Arthur has warned teachers against the collection of monies for extra classes from their pupils since it has not been authorized by the Ghana Education Service.

He said it was unfortunate that while some parents were withdrawing their children from school because they could not afford the payment of the approved levies for sports, culture and others some teachers had decided to over burden the parents by demanding extra classes fees from the pupils.

What was more disturbing, he said was that this canker, which was eating deep into our educational system had been extended to children in the kindergarten.

The DCE who was speaking at a seminar on responsible parenting at Anomabo said he had no quarrel if the extra classes was to prepare final year students for their examinations but to extend it to students of lower classes especially primary and Kindergartens was unacceptable. The seminar was organized by the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs in conjunction with NCWD and Ghana National Commission on Children.

He said if teachers could work effectively during the contact hours there would be no need for extra classes even for final year students.

Mr. Quainoo-Arthur cautioned teachers to stop exploiting parents and appealed to heads of schools, school management committees, and parent-teachers associations to ensure that the practice ceased. He appealed to fishermen to go beyond the provision of "sea bag" fish for their spouses and contribute meaningfully to the maintenance and education of their children.

In a speech read on behalf of Mrs. Gladys Asmah, Minister of Women and Children Affairs, she said when children were taken away from their parents to become their own bread winners parental guidance and counselling ceases and they were forced out of childhood into adulthood prematurely.

Mrs. Asmah said; "Our success and total development as a nation will be manifested in the sort of training, moral values and environment which children, the nation's future leaders have been bestowed with." Mrs. Marian A. Tackie, Acting Executive Director, National Council on Women and Development (NCWD) said parenting was a great and amazing responsibility but could be unpleasant if one did not prepare adequately towards meeting the challenges involved.

She said getting pregnant in most cases was the easy part but what to do as a parent did not come easy.

Mrs. Ruth Anderson of the Ghana National Commission on Children urged Ghanaians not to loose their links with the extended family system. 20 May 04