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18.08.2004 Regional News

"Review curriculum of Youth Leadership Training Institutes"

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Avenorpeme (V/R), Aug 18, GNA - Mr Oduro-Mensah Twum, the Principal of the Avenorpeme Youth Leadership Training Institute in the Akatsi District, has urged the government to review the curriculum of Youth Leadership Training Institutes (YLTIs) to include senior secondary school level Mathematics, English Language and Science.

He said such a review would help to expand the scope of the students and adequately condition the brilliant ones who might wish to further their education beyond the YLTI level.

Mr Twum, who made the call at the weekend, said YLTI graduates who might climb the social ladder through further education could put the leadership skills acquired at the YLTIs to their advantage. He said this when a member of the six-month-old reconstituted Board of Directors of the National Youth Council (NYC), an umbrella organisation of the YLTIs, interacted with tutors and students of the institute at Avenorpeme.

The YLTIs run basic level English Language and Mathematics just to prepare the students to follow the main courses in blacksmithing, carpentry and joinery, masonry, dressmaking, general agriculture, cookery, physical education and leadership roles up to the National Vocational Training Institute (NVTI) level.

He said it was time the YLTI scheme was reappraised in conformity with present-day values and desires in the interest of the students and the country.

"The authorities must even consider increasing the duration of the course from two to three years for the City and Guilds Examinations. The institute needs modern equipment for effective teaching and learning," Mr Twum said.

He called for the restoration of the Teaching and Demonstration Fund (TDF) cancelled a decade ago so that learning materials could regularly be acquired.

"Students find it difficult to procure demonstration materials in addition to those for their practical works."

The Principal said the Avenorpeme Institute, established in 1975 in wooden structures that used to house Romanians doing oil exploration in the Keta basin during the First Republic, had seen no renovation ever since, while the land was also not legally acquired.

He asked for the supply of office equipment, a vehicle and a review in staff remuneration, which had not been increased for the past five years, in-service training as well as promotion for staff, saying some staff had not been promoted for 18 years now.

Mr Richard Quarshie, the Board Member, said the problems in the YLTIs speak volumes of the predicaments in the NYC in general, ''The problems are being reviewed, including a new youth policy framework.''

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