Koforidua, Dec. 5, GNA - Mr Michael Nsowah, Acting Director-General of the Ghana Education Service (GES), has attributed the increased number of Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination (SSSCE) candidates whose papers were either cancelled or withheld by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) to "proven incidents of collusion among students."
He said while the educational and examination authorities had managed to bring sources of examination leakages under control, the collusion among students was on the ascendancy, "with some students even conspiring to hide possible answers in their panties." Addressing the 62nd Speech and Prize-Giving Day of the Ghana Secondary School (GHANASS) at Koforidua, on Saturday, Mr Nsowah reminded students that success in life was through hard work. He said since the dismissal of students for examination malpractices had grave implications for the state, therefore, to sustain the integrity of the educational system and students, parents had to redouble their efforts to instil in their children values that would deter them from deviant acts.
Mr Nsowah, a former School Prefect of GHANASS, noted that most students engaged in examination malpractices because of desperation and their failure to follow instructions provided by tutors. On challenges facing the educational sector, Mr Nsowah said because "traditional and conventional systems" of schooling could no longer be sustained, there was the need for opportunities to be created for people to combine learning with hard work that would suit them. The Acting Director-General said "distance education" was one of the possible methods to expand access to secondary education to reach most Ghanaians.
"The concern here is that if schools attempt to assume full responsibility for a very wide range of educational tasks, their efforts to improve or even maintain the quality of the basic education which they are trying to provide will be in jeopardy," He added.
On the issue of bullying in schools, Mr Nsowah reiterated the directive to heads of second cycle institutions to dismiss any arrant students than allow them to instigate good students to engage in offensive conducts.
Mr Hackman Owusu Agyemang, Minister of Water Resources, Works and Housing, said the 8.3 trillion cedis budgeted for the educational sector in 2006 amply demonstrated the commitment of the Government to improve the quality of education in the country.
Miss Rosemond Bampo, Headmistress of the school, in her report, expressed satisfaction with the computer-based selection of students into secondary schools because it brought a "welcome relief" to both the school authorities and parents.
She suggested that any weaknesses with the system should be addressed to take on board reservations expressed by the public. Mr Michael Agyekum Addo, Chief Executive of KAMA Group of Companies, and President of the old students association, urged the old students to take active interest in the activities of the school.
Mr Owusu-Agyemang, who cut the sod for commencement of a school-fencing project, donated 100 bags of cement towards the project while Nana Adjei Boateng, New Juaben Municipal Chief Executive, an old boy of the school, donated 20 bags of cement in addition to 20 million cedis cash.
Mr Jerry Asare, a sports administrator, an old boy, donated two million cedis and a computer with its accessories to the school. The Director-General's Special award of 200,000 cedis for best-dressed student went to Master Matthew Konduah while Master J.Y. Muanah and Augustus Acheampong took awards for being the best teachers in Mathematics and Science respectively.