The Ranking Member on Parliament's Education Committee, Peter Nortsu Kotoe, is questioning the rationale and the budgetary provision for the procurement of past examination questions for Senior High School students preparing to sit for the West African Senior High School Examination (WASSCE) in 2020.
According to him, the move is wrong and does not help in preparing the students to live beyond the examination.
The Ghana Education Service's Director-General, Professor Kwasi Opoku Amankwah on Tuesday announced the procurement of 400,000 sets of past questions and answer booklets for the first batch of the free SHS beneficiaries sitting for the exams next April.
The Head of Public Affairs at the Ministry of Education, Vincent Ekow Assafuah told Citi News that the procurement of the past questions was needful.
“It is geared towards improving the kind of education that we have and the learning outcomes that we have been receiving from WAEC over the years. It is the commitment or it is the anticipation of government that we are going to have our first set of free senior high school education students which we enrolled in 2017 who are going to write their WASSCE in 2020,” he said.
But Peter Nortsu Kotoe in a Citi News interview insisted that the move is unacceptable.
“Yours is to provide the learning and teaching materials for teachers to teach and prepare students for the examination. Are they preparing them only for examination or life? They must prepare them to think and answer questions, not to let them have questions in advance and tell them what answers to provide and when they get to the examination hall, they get disappointed. It is wrong for the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service to have done that,” he insisted.
The Free SHS (Free Senior High School) policy is an initiative introduced by President Nana Akufo-Addo in September 2017.
The policy had been a major campaign policy prior to the election of the President and the New Patriotic Party in 2016.
'I've no regret for using oil revenue to fund free SHS' – Akufo-Addo
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo had said that the educational investment being made in Ghana's children is vital for the future of the country.
According to him, the development of the country's human capital is what will enable Ghana transition from its current state into one of progress and prosperity, and thereby lift the standard of living of every Ghanaian.
Speaking at an interaction with members of staff and students of Mawuli Senior High School on Tuesday, 5th November 2019, the President indicated that prior him coming into office, an average of 100,000 children, annually, could not transition from Junior High School into Senior High School because of financial constraints.
“We couldn't progress as a nation if we continued the haemorrhage of our human capital. 100,000 on the average every year for over ten years, one million young Ghanaians would grow up with the knowledge that they have at the Junior High school level and that's it? That's no way our future could be bright,” he said.
That's why, the President noted, that his government took the decision “right from the beginning of our administration that we were going to change the direction of our country, we were going to change the educational policy of our country and bring in the Free Senior High School, so that those 100,000 that could not be captured in Senior High, now they are captured.”
There are 1.2 million students currently in Senior High schools across the country.