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23.07.2005 General News

Minister concerned about high dropout of girls

By GNA

Koforidua, July 23, GNA - The Deputy Eastern Regional Minister, Ms Susana Mensah has expressed concern about the fact that about half of the 17,482 girls enrolled in basic schools between 1998 and 1999 have dropouts of more than half of the 45,997 girls that were admitted into schools between 2002/2003 also left the classrooms.

The Deputy Minister therefore, asked teachers to make school environment girl-friendly, devoid of physical and sexual harassments to enable girls to set educational goals and pursue them. Ms Mensah was speaking at the observation of Eastern Region's Girls' Education week at Koforidua on Friday.

She was however, satisfied that the overall total enrolment figures of females in formal educational institutions had picked-up again, hitting a height of 151,051.

Ms Mensah expressed concern about how Ghana's quest for speedy development continued to be hampered by low levels of education among females.

"In my personal view, there is no tool for development, which is more effective than the education of girls," she emphasized. Ms Mensah reiterated the need for society to reckon that, the benefits to be gained in educating women outweighs the reasons for not doing so.

Speaking on the topic, 'Why Girls Education', the Eastern Regional Director of Education, Ewura Abena Ahwoi, said a nation with a large percentage of educated women develops faster than nations without one.

She, however, conceded that too much focus on girl-child education to the detriment of the boy-child education could also adversely affect national development strategies hence, the need to blend the two.

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