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07.10.2005 Regional News

Mfantseman basic school heads educated on capitation grant

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Saltpond (C/R), Oct. 7, GNA - Mr Frank Kwesi Appiah, Central Regional Accountant of the Ghana Education Service has exhorted heads of basic schools to be sincere in the utilisation and recoupment of the capitation grant. He warned that any head that inflated enrolment figures in order to claim more grant would be severely dealt with. Adequate checks and balances had been put in place to detect any fraudulent deals in the management of the grant, Mr Appiah told the school heads.

He was addressing a workshop for heads of basic schools in the Mfantseman District on accessing and managing the capitation grant at Saltpond.

Mr Appiah said the grant did not cover nursery schools since formal education under the Free Compulsory and Universal Education (FCUBE) started from the age of four.

He said even though the grant covered children in kindergartens, it did not include their feeding cost. Parents should continue to feed their children in the kindergartens until a decision was taken on it, he said. Similarly, he said teachers in KG's that were not on government payroll would continued to be paid by the communities until they were absorbed into the mainstream.

Mr Appiah said the capitation grant did not cover registration of students for the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) and advised parents to pay the registration fees for their children. He urged heads of schools to provide admission to as many children as possible saying, the heads could create additional classrooms using chapels and other existing facilities to ensure that the pupils were sustained in school.

Mr Robert Mensah, Regional Budget Officer, who took the participants through the format for obtaining and the utilisation of the grant reminded the school heads that it was mandatory to prepare School Performance Improvement Plans (SPIPs) and submit them to District Directors of Education for approval before they could secure the grants. Miss Vivian Etroo, District Director of Education, advised the school heads to seek the advice of the authorities at the Ghana Education Service (GES) on problems arising in the implementation and utilisation of the grants rather than resort to uninformed discussions of the issue on radio stations.