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Agricultural science teachers attend conference

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Kumasi, March 5, GNA - The stigmatisation and marginalisation of griculture in the pre-tertiary institutions has contributed to many prospective students and teachers shunning and abandoning the subject. Mr Akenten Osei-Wiafe, the Ashanti Regional Co-ordinator of Agricultural Science Teachers Association (ASTAG), who made the observation, said the immobility and non-payment of travelling expenses of pre-tertiary agricultural science teachers have also militated against the smooth teaching of the subject at that level.

He was speaking at a day's conference of Agricultural Science and Environmental Co-ordinators from pre-tertiary institutions in the Ashanti Region at the Kumasi Technical Institute (KTI) on Friday. The conference was aimed at reviewing the ASTAG's activities for the year and also plan programme of activities that would promote the effective and efficient teaching of agricultural science in basic schools and colleges.

Mr Osei-Wiafe said as a result of frustrations, many qualified agriculturists have left the Ghana Education Service (GES) and joined other lucrative sectors and disciplines.

"Agriculture can never survive as a liberal or chalk/board illustrated subject", he said and urged the GES to give true meaning to its teaching.

Mr Osei-Wiafe, however, enjoined his colleagues to stand firm and sacrifice their time and resources to help improve the practical teaching of the subject.

Mr L. Aduamoah, the National ASTAG President, asked teachers to encourage the youth to acquire agricultural skills that would enable them to be productive.

This, he noted, would reverse the increasing rate of rural-urban drift and promote productivity.

Mr E.O. Adjei, the Ashanti Regional Guidance and Counselling Co-ordinator, who presided, said while some advanced countries benefit from abundant food production through efficient and sustainable agricultural practices, the technically less endowed countries live in poverty. , entreated agricultural stakeholders to seriously invest and promote efficient and reliable practical agriculture to improve the quality of life of Ghanaians. 5 March 2005