Private Sector Collaboration Can Help Sustain FREE SHS
The Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has called for the involvement of private schools in the implementation of the Free SHS programme.
The NDC Flagbearer hopeful believes private schools are well positioned to ease the burden of infrastructure deficit following the implementation of the policy.
President Akufo-Addo announced a double-track system as his administration's interim response to the infrastructural challenges posed by the programme.
But speaking on CitiTV's Face-to-Face program on Tuesday, the Nadowli-Kaleo MP said private school operators should be engaged.
“What we should be doing is to get the private sector back on track, the private sector was very much involved in the education sector, with the introduction of the free SHS, a lot of the private schools have folded up,” he said.
He also stated that most of the private schools have facilities which are better than what most public high schools have.
“They are ready, they have facilities in the private schools that are better than the public school and therefore why not bring them on board” He said.
Alban Bagbin has warned that the Free Senior High School , will collapse by its third year if the challenges remain.
According to him, the program, although laudable, will collapse if the government fails to take into consideration the suggestions of stakeholders on how to ensure its success.
Free SHS: Private school tutors can't teach in public schools – Adutwum
Meanwhile, a Deputy Minister for Education in charge of General Education, Yaw Osei Adutwum , has said private schools in the country are not benefiting from the free Senior High School programme because most of their tutors do not qualify to teach in public schools.
According to him, facilities in such schools do not also meet standards set by the Ghana Education Service.
“…the teachers we have at the private schools do not have the qualification to teach at the public senior high schools and once you are using public money, everything you are doing there should be at the public level,” he said on the Citi Breakfast Show on Tuesday.
Dr. Adutwum said one of the reasons why such schools were not included was because the private secondary schools would be asked to hire new teachers and upgrade their facilities.
We can't scrap boarding from free SHS
Following calls for the scrapping of boarding from the free SHS programme to ensure its sustenance, Dr. Adutwum said the government is not considering such a move.
“We felt that the boarding system is a fabric of our education so we did not consider changing it…and not all communities have day schools.”
He argued that a number of deprived students would suffer if such a move is adopted.
“All communities don't have day schools. It's not that simple. When you do that you are going to disadvantage those who cannot afford. If you look at Accra, the vast majority of students are in day schools. 76 percent of students in Accra are day students. And Accra schools do very well. The same thing cannot be said in other regions where the location or where the population is distributed does not lend itself to the implementation of a very strong day programme,” he stated.